This week, Israel’s right wing government and the Hamas terrorist organization agreed to a pause in fighting after negotiations facilitated by Qatar.
During the pause, Hamas will release abductees back to Israel and Israel will release Palestinians that it is holding prisoner. The first of these exchanges have already begun and more are expected in the coming days.
As they occur, the United Nations and international aid organizations are trying to get badly needed supplies into Hamas-controlled Gaza to help the millions of Palestinians in need of food, clean water, and medicine.
A number of major news organizations have liveblogs going today with regular updates. Here are some of the ones we’re keeping an eye on:
Here’s a summary of the latest developments from the BBC:
On Tuesday, President Biden issued a statement hailing the agreement.
“I welcome the deal to secure the release of hostages taken by the terrorist group Hamas during its brutal assault against Israel on October 7th,” the President said.
“Jill and I have been keeping all those held hostage and their loved ones close to our hearts these many weeks, and I am extraordinarily gratified that some of these brave souls, who have endured weeks of captivity and an unspeakable ordeal, will be reunited with their families once this deal is fully implemented.”
“I thank Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani of Qatar and President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi of Egypt for their critical leadership and partnership in reaching this deal. And I appreciate the commitment that Prime Minister Netanyahu and his government have made in supporting an extended pause to ensure this deal can be fully carried out and to ensure the provision of additional humanitarian assistance to alleviate the suffering of innocent Palestinian families in Gaza. I look forward to speaking with each of these leaders and staying in close contact as we work to ensure this deal is carried through in its entirety.”
“It is important that all aspects of this deal be fully implemented.”
“As President, I have no higher priority than ensuring the safety of Americans held hostage around the world. That’s why — from the earliest moments of Hamas’s brutal assault — my national security team and I have worked closely with regional partners to do everything possible to secure the release of our fellow citizens. We saw the first results of that effort in late October, when two Americans were reunited with their loved ones. Today’s deal should bring home additional American hostages, and I will not stop until they are all released.”
According to a dispatch from the White House press pool, the President was briefed multiple times this morning by his national security team on the latest developments regarding the release of hostages from Gaza.
“During the humanitarian pause that has been in place since this morning, the UN was able to scale up the delivery of humanitarian assistance into and across Gaza,” said a bulletin published by OCHA, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
“200 trucks were dispatched from Nitsana to the Rafah crossing.”
“137 trucks of goods were offloaded by the UNRWA reception point in Gaza making it the biggest humanitarian convoy received since October 7.”
“129,000 litres of fuel and four trucks of gas also crossed into Gaza.”
“21 critical patients were evacuated in a large-scale medical operation from the north of Gaza. Hundreds of thousands of people were assisted with food, water, medical supplies and other essential humanitarian items.”
“The UN welcomes the release of 24 hostages held in Gaza since October 7 and renews its call for the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages.”
“Humanitarian teams from the UN and partners will continue to ramp up humanitarian operations to meet the needs of people throughout Gaza in the coming days.”
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