Israel confirms that on the fourth day of the truce, Hamas released 11 hostages.
On the last day of the first four-day ceasefire between the warring parties, Israel said late on Monday that 11 hostages, all of whom were women and children, had been freed from Hamas custody in the Gaza Strip.
33 Palestinians detained in Israeli jails were released early on Tuesday and taken to Ramallah, an occupied West Bank city.
Israel and Hamas decided to prolong their ceasefire by two more days, according to a statement from Qatar’s Foreign Ministry hours earlier.
With Monday’s releases, 50 Israelis and 19 hostages of other nationalities have been set free under the terms of the truce. 150 Palestinians have been freed from Israeli detention centers thus far.
When Hamas launched its attack in southern Israel on October 7, it took about 240 hostages and started the conflict. Two were discovered dead inside Gaza, and one was set free by Israeli forces.
Israel has declared that for every ten more hostages freed, the cease-fire will be extended by one day. Following Qatar’s announcement, Hamas confirmed that it had consented to a two-day extension “under the same terms.” Qatar is a major conflict mediator alongside the United States and Egypt.
Increased fuel and supplies are being shipped into Gaza as a result of the cease-fire agreement, but aid organizations claim this is still insufficient to meet the needs of the 2.3 million Palestinians living in Gaza who have been under Israeli siege and bombardment for weeks.
The Health Ministry in Gaza, under Hamas control, reports that over 13,300 Palestinians have died since the start of the conflict; approximately two thirds of these deaths were women and children. Approximately 1,200 people have died in Israel, the majority of them during Hamas’s initial incursion. Israeli forces have lost at least 77 soldiers in their ground offensive.