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On Day 2 of the Gaza truce, Hamas releases 17 hostages, nine of them are Irish-Israeli girls

Following the release from Gaza of the 13 Israeli captives and the four foreigners by Hamas, Israel announced the liberation of an additional 39 Palestinians.

The Israeli military reported that, following several hours of delays and accusations that Israel had broken the conditions of a truce agreement, Hamas released a second set of 13 Israelis and four Thai nationals late on Saturday under the terms of a ceasefire agreement.

According to the Israeli military, the liberated prisoners, which included four Thais, were taken to Israel. In addition to being reunited with their families, they were being transported to hospitals for observation.

Following the release of the four foreigners and 13 Israeli hostages by Hamas from the Gaza Strip, another group of 39 Palestinians have been freed.

Top stories on the ceasefire and fighting between Israel and Hamas:

  • After the exchange was delayed, Qatar—which, along with Egypt, assisted in mediating the agreement—announced that two mediators had succeeded in breaking the deadlock between Israel and Hamas, according to The New York Times.
  • Afterward, Israel verified that Hamas had given the International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza custody of 13 Israelis, including five women and eight children. According to Israeli officials, they were then brought to Israel and sent to hospitals in a convoy that crossed the Rafah crossing into Egypt. Additionally, four Thai nationals were set free.
  • TV footage, meanwhile, showed Palestinian prisoners being welcomed back to their homes in east Jerusalem which has been annexed. Israa Jaabis, 38, was the most well-known person mentioned as being released. She was found guilty of setting off a gas cylinder in her car during a checkpoint in 2015, injuring a police officer, and receiving an 11-year prison sentence.
  • The agreement was in danger of collapsing earlier when Hamas declared that it would postpone the second batch of captive releases on Saturday until Israel fulfilled all requirements of the truce, including allowing relief vehicles to enter northern Gaza.
  • According to Hamas spokesperson Osama Hamdan, only 65 of the 340 supply trucks that have entered Gaza since Friday have reached northern Gaza, which is “less than half of what Israel agreed on.”
  • The United Nations and other international organizations, according to the Israel Defence Forces, distributed the aid within the Gaza Strip. The biggest number of assistance trucks since October 7 were delivered to northern Gaza on Saturday, according to confirmation from the UN. Food, water, and emergency medical supplies were among them.
  • The exchange on Saturday comes after Hamas released 39 Palestinian women and teenagers from Israeli prisons on Friday in exchange for the release of another 13 Israeli prisoners, including children and the elderly.
  • News agency AP was informed by a Palestinian person with knowledge of the talks that Hamas will stick to the four-day ceasefire reached with Israel. This is the first ceasefire since Hamas militants stormed southern Israel on October 7, killing 1,200 people and capturing over 240 prisoners.
  • Following the attack, Israel promised to eliminate the Gaza-based Hamas militants by attacking the enclave with bombs and shells and conducting a land offensive in the north. Palestinian health authorities declared on Saturday that the counteroffensive has killed at least 14,800 individuals, around 40% of them minors.
  • The newest group of hostages freed by Hamas gunmen on Saturday included a nine-year-old Irish-Israeli child, according to a statement from Ireland’s prime minister, Leo Varadkar. “This is a day of enormous joy and relief for Emily Hand and her family,” Varadkar stated. Emily Hand, who was imprisoned earlier this month, turned nine. 
  • The elite IDF unit and Shin Bet forces are currently traveling with the hostages in Israeli territory who have returned home, according to the Israeli foreign minister. It stated, “Our forces will accompany the returnees until they reach their families in the hospitals, following an initial assessment of their medical condition.”


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