Israeli authorities have given their approval for further Qatari funding for the blockaded Gaza Strip, reported Al-Monitor, as efforts continue to avoid, at least for the time being, an escalation.
Qatari Ambassador to the Palestinian territories Mohammed Al-Emadi met on 25 February with senior Israeli official Major General Kamil Abu Rokon and UN envoy Nickolay Mladenov, said the report.
The day before, Al-Emadi had met with Hamas' leader in the Gaza Strip, Yahya Al-Sinwar, "to discuss ways to improve the woeful living conditions in the besieged enclave", including "providing more facilities and a gas line for the enclave's power station".
A Hamas statement claimed that Qatari officials "agreed to pay out $12 million to 120,000 vulnerable families and allocated $2 million to help 500 young men get married".
"Qatar also agreed to disburse another $2 million to restore the homes of poor families, in addition to $1 million for university students to pay tuition and obtain degrees," Al-Monitor added.
"These measures were agreed upon with Israel through mediators within the scope of what is known as the truce understandings," said Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qassem.
"Hamas is exerting all possible efforts to provide more support to our people in Gaza," he added.
"We believe that the grant is one of several measures to [ease] the blockade. We want the siege on the Gaza Strip to be completely lifted and to ensure freedom of movement for individuals and goods to and from the Gaza Strip."