Second extension of truce between Israel, Hamas now a possibility – NaturalNews.com
Written by GRB on 01/12/2023
International mediators are actively working to secure a second extension to the truce in the Israel-Palestinian conflict. The negotiations involve Israel and Hamas, with key mediator Qatar, along with the United States and Egypt, participating.
The focus of the discussions is on the conditions to extend the truce, including the duration of the extension and the exchange of captives for prisoners.
Late on Wednesday, Nov. 29, the Israeli army confirmed the release of more Israeli captives in Gaza. Simultaneously, 30 Palestinian women and children were released from Israeli jails. (Related: Israel approves MULTI-DAY CEASEFIRE DEAL: Hundreds of imprisoned Palestinian women and children to be released in exchange for 50 Israeli hostages.)
The 10 released Israeli hostages and four Thai nationals arrived in Hatzerim in southern Israel, where they were warmly welcomed by a large crowd lining the streets. They are set to be transported to the Hatzerim Air Force base and are expected to be flown to various Israeli hospitals.
Reunions with families are anticipated at the air base and additional reunions will take place at the respective hospitals.
The 10 Israeli nationals, including some dual citizens, were released as part of the Israel-Hamas truce deal, while the four Thai citizens were released independently of the agreement.
Two Israeli-Russian hostages, released outside the truce deal, have been admitted to the Sheba Medical Center in the Tel Aviv area.
Also on Wednesday, a total of 30 Palestinians were released from Israeli prisons, according to a statement from the Israeli prison service. Among those released was Ahed Tamimi, a prominent Palestinian activist known for a 2017 viral video where she slapped an Israeli soldier.
Report: Truce likely to be extended for another few days
Despite the complexities of the negotiations, Al Jazeera‘s Hashem Ahelbarra reported that there is a consensus that the truce will likely be extended for another few days. However, the more challenging negotiations, aimed at bringing a permanent end to the Gaza war, lie ahead.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu emphasized that, after the phase of returning captives is exhausted, Israel is unequivocally prepared to resume the campaign against Hamas.
The initial four-day truce, beginning on Friday, was renewed for two more days. During this period, significant releases of captives took place on both sides.
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged the parties to seek a “true humanitarian ceasefire” to address the severe humanitarian crisis in Gaza. Guterres highlighted the devastating impact of Israeli operations, leading to the death of a significant number of children in Gaza.
Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani noted that the extended truce has facilitated the entry of much-needed humanitarian aid into Gaza. He called for steps towards a sustainable ceasefire and measures to ensure the uninterrupted flow of humanitarian aid.
Hamas is seeking guarantees from key parties, including Qatar and Egypt, that the continued exchange of prisoners will result in the cessation of Israeli bombardment in Gaza.
While Israel’s firm stance provides negotiation leverage, strong regional calls for a comprehensive settlement exert pressure on Israel.
Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud urged the UN Security Council to enforce a lasting ceasefire in Gaza, emphasizing that a truce alone is insufficient.
Negotiations are reportedly underway for the release of additional captives, with the potential extension of the ceasefire for five days.
The next phase of the truce and captives’ release is expected to involve discussions on various categories, including Israeli captives, elderly men, female soldiers, reservist soldiers, and the bodies of Israelis killed before or during captivity.
Hamas has expressed readiness to discuss the release of captured men, military personnel and civilians.
Watch Tiffany Meier’s report on the Gaza ceasefire.
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