Israel, Hamas open to extend ceasefire

Israel, Hamas open to extend ceasefire

THE truce between Israel and Hamas is in its final 24 hours and the possibility of an extension is looking bright.

For the first time, Hamas said it was willing to extend the pause after it freed more hostages including a 4-year-old Israeli-American girl who was orphaned due to the October 7 attack.

Meanwhile, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that they, too, are willing to extend the truce if it meant having more hostages freed. However, the Israeli military said it will resume its operations with all its might immediately after the truce expires.

To recall, the 4-day Israel-Hamas truce began on Friday and has completed three rounds of hostage swap as of Sunday.

Part of the truce includes releasing 50 Israeli hostages in exchange of 150 Palestinians jailed in Israeli prisons, most of them are women and minors.

Hamas said it also released a Russian hostage in response to the efforts of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The truce was mediated last Thursday by Qatar and Egypt.

Chinese media, Xinhua news agency citing its Palestinian sources said that mediation efforts have been intensified to extend the current ceasefire.

Qatar and Egypt conveyed a draft agreement to Israel and Hamas on extending the ceasefire and facilitating a larger prisoner swap between the two warring sides, the sources, who wished to be anonymous, told Xinhua.

The sources said that the discussions involved the release of 40 to 50 captives from Gaza, coupled with increased humanitarian aid flow into the strip to alleviate the humanitarian crisis.


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