A Saudi-owned news website claimed on Saturday that Shin Bet head Nadav Argaman met secretly in Cairo last week with Hamas leaders.
According to the London-based website, Independent Arabia (www.indepdendentarabia.com), the purported meeting was held under the sponsorship of Gen. Abbas Kamel, head of Egypt’s General Intelligence Service.
The report said that the top Egyptian security official proposed to Argaman that he listen directly to Hamas’s conditions for achieving a long-term truce with Israel. The Egyptian official also suggested that the Shin Bet head directly present the Israeli position to the Hamas leaders.
The report claimed that Argaman received a “green light” from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to meet with the Hamas officials.
At the meeting, the Shin Bet head raised the issue of the Israelis held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip, including the bodies of two missing IDF soldiers, according to the Saudi report. Argaman, it added, also affirmed the need for an “absolute truce” that would include an end to the weekly protests along the Gaza-Israel border.
The report claimed that Argaman promised that Israel was prepared to ease the blockade on the Gaza Strip and work directly with Hamas at the border crossings with Israel. He also promised that Israel would work towards reopening the Kerem Shalom border crossing, the Karni industrial zone and the Rafah terminal between the Gaza Strip and Egypt, the report added.
The meeting was held in a positive atmosphere and some of the Hamas officials were speaking in Hebrew - a language they learned during their incarceration in Israeli prisons, the report said. It named Hamas leader Musa Abu Marzouk as one of the officials who attended the purported meeting. Abu Marzouk, according to the report, was accompanied by two unnamed Hamas commanders.