ISRAEL + HAMAS

Deal reached to extend Israel-Hamas truce by two days, Qatar says

Nov 27, 2023, 9:46 AM | Updated: Nov 30, 2023, 5:22 pm

Palestinians walk through damaged buildings in Gaza City....

Palestinians walk through damaged buildings in Gaza City.(Mohammed Hajjar/AP).

(Mohammed Hajjar/AP)

(CNN) — An agreement has been reached to extend the truce in Gaza between Israel and Hamas by two more days, Qatar’s foreign ministry spokesperson Majed Al-Ansari said on Monday on X.

CNN has reached out to the Israeli government for comment.

The announcement comes after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken held a call on Monday with the prime minister of Qatar, which helped broker the original four-day truce, according to a source familiar with the discussions.

Egypt had said earlier that there were ongoing efforts to extend the pause by two days.

The four-day truce in Gaza, which was slated to end on Tuesday, marked the first major diplomatic breakthrough in the conflict, bringing temporary respite for Palestinians in the besieged enclave and allowing the release of 40 Israeli hostages.

Hamas said it agreed with Qatar and Egypt, to extend the truce for an additional two days “under the same conditions reached before.”

Mark Regev, the senior adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, confirmed to CNN’s Dana Bash that a two-day extension had been reached but will not go into effect until the hostages set for release on Monday are freed.

Regev said that under the agreement Hamas will release 10 hostages each day.

“For every 10 hostages released, we’re willing to give an extension of another day, and if Hamas will release Israeli hostages as agreed we will extend — that’s the bottom line,” Regev said.

Regev said he believes the hostages released over the next two days would be women and children.

“My understanding is that there’s still enough women and children in Gaza held by Hamas for the next 20,” Regev said.

Regev credited US President Joe Biden for helping arrange the parameters of the deal.

“These were negotiated with the help of President Biden and we thank him for putting his effort and his office behind these arrangements. I don’t think we would have reached the deal without his input,” he said.

The initial deal to secure the release of 50 women and children hostages was struck with the understanding that the cessation in fighting could be extended by additional days if Hamas was able to produce additional hostages, as CNN has previously reported.

Israeli and US officials believed that there were more women and children being held in captivity than 50, but agreed to the terms of the deal as Hamas insisted that it needed to use the pause in fighting to gather up additional hostages.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said the prime minister of Qatar held a call with President Biden. This has been corrected.

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Deal reached to extend Israel-Hamas truce by two days, Qatar says