As the truce between Hamas and Israel enters its fourth and final day on Monday, the two sides discussed the possibility of extending it, a move that has the support of key countries including the United States and Qatar.
In a statement released Sunday evening, Hamas said it wanted to “extend the truce after the end of the four-day period, through serious efforts to increase the number of people released from imprisonment, as stipulated in the ceasefire agreement.” -the humanitarian fire”.
The agreed truce already includes a provision for an extension of one more day for ten hostages that Hamas is prepared to release.
While Israel’s war cabinet discussed the possibility of an extension on Sunday evening, a source told CNN that the terms of such an extension, as set out in the original truce, remain unchanged.
Earlier this weekend, Qatar, which played a central role in mediating the initial agreement, said it also hoped to extend the truce.
“What we hope is that the momentum given by the liberations… and by this four-day agreement will allow us to extend the truce beyond these four days, and therefore to engage in more serious discussions on the rest of the hostages,” Qatar Foreign Ministry spokesperson Majed Al-Ansari told CNN on Saturday.
At a press conference on Sunday, US President Joe Biden also expressed his willingness to extend the pause in fighting to try to ensure the safe release of more hostages and provide essential aid to civilians of the enclave.
If you’re just joining us, here are some other key headlines:
First American freed: Among the 17 hostages freed Sunday was Abigail Edan, a 4-year-old Israeli-American, whose release marks the first time an American hostage has been successfully freed since the truce began. Biden praised Edan’s release in a speech and spoke with his family Sunday afternoon, according to the White House. Authorities have released a full list of the names and ages of the freed hostages. They include two mothers with their children and two brothers and sisters.
Palestinian prisoners released: Thirty-nine prisoners and detainees from a total of seven Israeli prisons were released on Sunday as part of the reciprocity agreement, the Israeli Prison Service confirmed. The group is made up of boys aged 18 and under; two are 15 years old and one – the youngest released – is 14 years old. Twenty-three of those released had been placed in administrative detention, a widely criticized practice in which a detainee ignores the charges against them and their case is not subject to legal proceedings. any legal proceedings.
Aid arrives in Gaza: At least 120 humanitarian trucks entered Gaza through the Rafah border on Sunday, the Egyptian government confirmed. The delivery of aid to Gaza has been a key factor in maintaining the truce and trade between Israel and Hamas.
The hostages leave the hospital: Some Israelis from the first wave of released hostages – members of two families – were released from Schneider Children’s Medical Hospital in Israel. They are the first former hostages to be freed.
Palestinians killed in the West Bank: Eight Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire in the occupied West Bank in 24 hours, the Palestinian Health Ministry said in a statement on Sunday. CNN has asked the Israel Defense Forces for comment on the killings.