Hamas leadership calls for insurrection during Ramadan

Haniyeh's call casts doubt on the ceasefire proposal that the United States intends to present next Monday. The Israeli government is sounding alarm bells.

The Hamas terrorist group called on Muslims and Palestinians to rise up in the city of Jerusalem at the beginning of Ramadan. Ismail Haniyeh, leader of Hamas, sent this message via a televised announcement. The call from the group's leadership comes just a few days before the date planned by the United States to present its proposal for a ceasefire in Gaza.

Ramadan, which begins on March 11, is the Muslim holy month. During this time, Muslims fast daily from sunrise to sundown as a form of atonement. In Palestine, the prayers of this holiday gain special relevance around the Al-Aqsa mosque. It is there where Ismail Haniyeh calls on Palestinians to gather en masse on March 11.

Part two of Hamas' plan

The Israeli government is cautiously considering the call from the Hamas leadership, which it interprets as the next phase of its plan. It fears that with the call for massive protests in Al-Aqsa throughout Ramadan, the Gaza conflict will definitively reach a more international phase, with the more marked intervention from Lebanon and Iran.

In statements collected by the AJN agency, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant assured that Iran, Hamas and the Lebanese group Hezbollah intend to execute "the second stage of Oct. 7 and set the earth on fire."

“Hamas's main objective is to take Ramadan, with emphasis on the Temple Mount and Jerusalem, and make it the second phase of its plan that began on Oct. 7. Hamas' main objective is being amplified by Iran and Hezbollah," Gallant asserted.

The government said on Monday it would allow Ramadan prayers at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque but would set limits based on security needs, setting the stage for possible clashes if crowds of Palestinians turn out and violence in Gaza continues to wreak havoc.

In recent years, the Al-Aqsa mosque has been the scene of harsh and repeated clashes between the Muslim population of Jerusalem and Israeli law enforcement.

Ceasefire proposal coming soon

With these perspectives, it is possible that Hamas rejects the ceasefire that the Biden administration will soon present. In his televised address, Haniyeh assured that although he is willing to be flexible regarding the negotiations for the hostages in Gaza, the terrorist group is not abandoning the fight.

"The occupation and its partner, the United States, will not be able to achieve through political machinations what they did not achieve in combat. The world, especially the Arab states, must contain the enemy and refuse to let them invade the city of Rafah," the Hamas leader said Tuesday.

According to Qatari sources consulted by Reuters, there are still many issues pending be resolved so that all parties accept the ceasefire. Biden's team is scrambling to promise more humanitarian aid for the Gaza Strip in order to gain more buy-in for its plan. If it is rejected, it would be a resounding failure for the Biden administration.