In a critical development, Israel and Hamas have agreed to extend their ceasefire for a seventh day. The last-minute decision comes as mediators worked hard to free more hostages and get much-needed aid into Gaza.
Since the ceasefire began, there’s been a pause in the bombings, allowing some relief to the battered region. The truce continued despite a recent attack in Jerusalem by Hamas militants, which Israel cited as further justification for their tough stance.
Yesterday, Hamas released 16 hostages, while Israel freed 30 Palestinian prisoners. The total count now stands at 97 hostages freed by militants during the truce, 70 Israeli women and children, plus 27 foreign nationals. With fewer women and children left, the focus may shift to Israeli men, including soldiers, for future release.
U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, currently in Israel, has praised the truce’s effectiveness in reuniting families and facilitating aid to Gaza. He has also urged Israel to prioritize the safety of Palestinian civilians.