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Netanyahu at a Cabinet meeting in 2019. Photo: Gali Tibbon/Pool/AFP via Getty

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will convene Israel's Security Cabinet at 7pm local time (12pm ET) on Thursday to discuss the military operation in Gaza and the possibility of a ceasefire.

Why it matters: Any ceasefire would require the approval of the Security Cabinet, and senior Israeli officials expect an agreement by this weekend.

  • Yes, but: Netanyahu has resisted international pressure toward a ceasefire so far. In an apparent signal that he wouldn't be rushed, Netanyahu canceled a planned Cabinet meeting on Wednesday after President Biden urged him to move toward a ceasefire.

The state of play: The ceasefire talks are moving on two tracks: Egyptian intelligence officials are talking to Netanyahu's office and to Hamas leadership in Gaza; while UN envoy Tor Wennesland is talking to Hamas political leadership abroad.

  • Wennesland arrived in Qatar on Wednesday for talks with Hamas officials.

Driving the news: Both sides have intensified their attacks in anticipation of a ceasefire. Gaza health officials said on Thursday that 230 Palestinians had been killed since the beginning of the crisis, with 1,710 wounded.

What they're saying: A diplomatic source told me the UN was "actively engaged with all the relevant parties in order to de-escalate the situation on the ground."

  • A senior Israeli official said he thinks a breakthrough toward a ceasefire could take place in the next 24 hours. Netanyahu's office declined to comment.
  • Hamas official Moussa Abu Marzouk said Wednesday that he expects the talks to produce a ceasefire within a day or two.

What to watch: Hamas officials have called on Israel to end police "incursions" into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, or Temple Mount, and stop the evictions of Palestinian residents in East Jerusalem as part of a ceasefire.

  • Israel refuses to discuss any agreement that would link the Gaza conflict to Jerusalem, sources familiar with the talks tell me.

Go deeper

Aug 25, 2021 - World

U.S. has options if Iran talks fail, officials say ahead of Israeli PM's visit

Biden in the Oval Office. Photo: Doug Mills-Pool/Getty

If diplomacy fails, the U.S. will consider using other means to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, senior Biden administration officials said in a briefing ahead of Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's visit to the White House.

Why it matters: Iran is the main agenda item for Bennett's visit, and he is expected to push for a "Plan B" now that nuclear talks have stalled. The U.S. officials didn't say what exactly the administration would consider but are clearly trying to reassure the Israelis that they are willing to pressure Iran.

Ina Fried, author of Login
1 hour ago - Technology
Column / Signal Boost

Exclusive: Meta's civil rights chief aims to "turn the knob" for good

Photo Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios. Photo: Meta

A year ago, Facebook brought in Roy Austin, Jr. to lead a new team focused on civil rights. Since then, he has assembled a squad of experts advising parent company Meta on everything from voting rights to hate speech to ensuring new products don't have discriminatory impact.

The big picture: Austin's team of nine must tackle those tough issues inside a company of nearly 70,000 employees serving more than 3 billion users around the world.

Momentum builds for salary transparency

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

New York City will soon require employers to supply a salary range when they're advertising a position — the biggest step yet in the growing but controversial movement for pay transparency.

Why it matters: Laws like New York's aim to give workers, particularly women and people of color, more power in job negotiations. But the rise in remote work is throwing a wrench into the effort.

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