CAIRO: Qatari foreign ministry spokesperson Majed Al-Ansari said on Thursday that Hamas has not yet handed mediators its response to the latest ceasefire proposal and is still studying it, adding that Qatari, Egyptian and the U.S. mediators are still making efforts.

Earlier, two Egyptian security sources said talks aimed at reaching a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza war continued but had shown no sign of a breakthrough.

Talks began on Wednesday, when CIA director William Burns met senior officials from Qatar and Egypt in Doha to discuss a proposal that U.S. President Joe Biden publicly endorsed last week. Biden described the three-phase plan as an Israeli initiative.

On Wednesday, in an apparent blow to the truce proposal touted by Biden, the leader of Hamas Ismail Haniyeh said the group would demand a permanent end to the war in Gaza and Israeli withdrawal as part of a ceasefire plan.

Since a brief week-long truce in November, all attempts to arrange a ceasefire have failed, with Hamas insisting on its demand for a permanent end to the conflict, while Israel says it is prepared to discuss only temporary pauses until the militant group is defeated.

The war began after Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, killing around 1,200 people and capturing more than 250 hostages, according to Israeli tallies. (Reporting by Yomna Ehab and Enas Alashray; Editing by Leslie Adler and David Gregorio)