Israel and Hamas Extend Their War Truce For Another Day

Israel and Hamas Extend Their War Truce For Another Day

Israel and Hamas have agreed to extend their truce for at least another day, allowing for the release of more hostages held by the militant group in Gaza.

Qatar, the main mediator in the talks between the warring sides, said its efforts to broker a permanent end to hostilities are continuing.

The Gulf state was able, along with the US and Egypt, to mediate the initial truce agreement that went into effect Nov. 24.

Israel’s military confirmed the cease-fire would continue beyond this morning, without giving a time-line. Hamas also confirmed the extension. The announcements came minutes before the truce was set to expire at 7 a.m. local time.

Read More: The Families of Israelis Held Hostage by Hamas Speak Out

“In light of the mediators’ efforts to continue the process of releasing the hostages and subject to the terms of the framework, the operational pause will continue,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a post on X.

On Wednesday, Hamas released 10 hostages — five children and five women, including dual nationals of the US, Germany and the Netherlands. Israel released 30 Palestinians from jails. In a separate deal, Hamas let go four Thai and two Russian-Israeli citizens.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is in Tel Aviv for his third trip since the Oct. 7 attack in which Hamas killed 1,200 people and captured more than 240.

While diplomatic efforts have focused on a permanent cease-fire, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has made clear his country wants to “fight until the end.” The country has consistently said its goal is to destroy Hamas, designated a terrorist organization by the US and European Union.

“There is no situation in which we do not go back to fighting until the end,” Netanyahu said on Wednesday. “The entire Security Cabinet is behind it. The entire government is behind it. The soldiers are behind it. The people are behind it. This is exactly what we will do.”

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