Israel offered Hamas a week-long truce in exchange for the release of 35 hostages

Israel has offered the Palestinian group Hamas a week-long pause in hostilities in the Gaza Strip in exchange for the release of 35 hostages, CNN reported on December 22, citing a U.S. official (Vedomosti summary).

The hostages in question are women, the elderly, the wounded, and men in poor health.

It is not yet known how Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar reacted to the Israeli proposal.

Recall that on Saturday, October 7, Hamas hit Israel with rockets, its militants invaded the territory of Israel, killed more than 1,200 civilians and took about 240 hostages.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) responded by launching Operation Iron Swords, entering the Gaza Strip, where Hamas is based. It began destroying the movement’s bases, some of them placed in tunnels under residential buildings, hospitals, stores, etc. The entire area of the Gaza Strip is about 240 square kilometers and the tunnels are more than 500 kilometers long. Their flooding has begun.

From November 24 to the morning of December 1, the first truce was declared, during which Hamas released 78 Israeli women and children, 30 hostages from other countries, and Israel released 240 Palestinians from prisons.

Israeli President Yitzhak Herzog said on December 19 that the country’s authorities are ready for another humanitarian truce with Hamas militants for the sake of releasing Israeli hostages. According to TASS, on December 21, Hamas issued a statement rejecting the possibility of negotiations on the release of captives before a complete ceasefire in the enclave. After that, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu emphasized that the operation will not end until Israel’s goals of eliminating the Palestinian group and releasing all hostages are achieved.

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