Hamas Releases 13 Israeli and 7 Foreign Prisoners to the International Red Cross


Hamas Releases 13 Israeli and 7 Foreign Prisoners to the International Red Cross

Gaza/Jerusalem – November 26, 2023

In a significant development amid the ongoing conflict, Hamas, through its military wing, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, has handed over 13 Israeli prisoners and 7 individuals of foreign nationality to the International Committee of the Red Cross as part of a humanitarian ceasefire agreement.

In an official statement, Hamas announced the transfer of captives in accordance with the terms of the humanitarian truce, reflecting the commitment to engage in a process that aligns with international humanitarian standards.

The Israeli military, based on information provided by the International Committee of the Red Cross, confirmed that the Israeli prisoners are en route to the Rafah Border Crossing.

This move follows the announcement by Qatar’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Majid al-Ansari, who, after the Kassam Brigades delayed the release of Israeli captives due to alleged non-compliance with the agreed-upon terms by Israel, stated on social media that obstacles hindering the implementation of the agreement had been resolved. Al-Ansari declared, “Tonight, 13 Israeli prisoners will be released in exchange for 39 Palestinian prisoners, following discussions between Egypt, Qatar, and the concerned parties.”

The ceasefire, negotiated as a four-day break in hostilities between Israel and Hamas, came into effect on Friday, November 24, at 07:00 local time. As per the terms, Hamas is set to release 50 Israeli prisoners in exchange for Israel freeing 150 Palestinian detainees from its prisons. Notably, the group of prisoners on both sides includes women and children.

Addressing the delay in the release, Israel Defense Forces Spokesperson Daniel Hagari emphasized the military’s commitment to the agreement. In a press conference, Hagari stated, “We are bound by the agreement on the exchange of prisoners with Hamas, and, together with Qatar and Egypt, we are resolute in its implementation. The efforts to bring back the abducted individuals are on a long road ahead, and we will employ every means to ensure their safe return.”

Hagari also revealed that the Israeli military is conducting an investigation into the prisoners released on Friday but refrained from disclosing specific details or outcomes.

Additionally, Hagari mentioned that, in adherence to the agreement, Israel has permitted the entry of aid trucks into both the southern and northern regions of Gaza.

The developments underscore the delicate nature of negotiations and agreements in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with humanitarian considerations and the release of prisoners playing a crucial role in ongoing efforts towards de-escalation and peace in the region.

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