The ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas in the Gaza Strip, as well as the exchange of hostages, will begin on Friday, said Majid Al-Ansari, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Qatar, which is mediating in the negotiations. – Israel has received a preliminary list of hostages to be released, and the authorities are contacting the hostages’ families, the Israeli prime minister’s office said.
The representative of the Ministry of Diplomacy announced that the truce would begin at 7 a.m. local time (6 a.m. in Poland), and the first group of hostages would be released at 4 p.m. (3 p.m. in Poland). A list of all civilians who will be released has been agreed, the spokesman added.
It was previously agreed that under the agreement concluded between Israel and Hamas, approximately 50 women and children from the more than 200 people kidnapped from Israel in early October would be released.
The hostages – according to information from both sides and previously released people – are currently being held, among others, in the tunnels running under the surface of the Palestinian semi-enclave.
Suspension of fights
Israel’s agreement with Hamas provides for a four-day suspension of fighting and the release of about 50 women and children imprisoned in the Gaza Strip in exchange for “a number of Palestinian women and children detained in Israeli prisons,” the authorities said on Wednesday Qatar.
As part of the agreement, “a larger number of humanitarian convoys will also enter Gaza,” an earlier Qatari statement said. The agreement also stipulates that for each additional day of cessation in fighting, an additional 10 Hamas hostages will be released.
The Israeli military estimates that Hamas is holding 239 hostages in Gaza – including a number of foreigners – kidnapped from Israel during the October 7 attack. The agreement was reached after growing external pressure on the Israeli authorities to allow humanitarian aid to enter Gaza and internal pressure from the families of the kidnapped, demanding action to release them.
Main photo source: PAP/EPA/CHRISTOPHE PETIT TESSON