The Israeli government and Hamas announced a 4-day ceasefire agreement in exchange for the freedom of about 50 hostages from the Gaza Strip.
On November 22, the Israeli government issued a statement saying that according to the agreement recently approved by cabinet members, 50 hostages, including women and children, will be released during a 4-day ceasefire between the country’s army and armed forces—Hamas armed forces in the Gaza Strip.
The ceasefire could be extended if more hostages are released. According to Israel’s proposal, for every 10 hostages released, there will be an additional day of ceasefire.
“The Israeli government is committed to bringing all hostages home. Today, we approved the agreement as the first step to achieve this goal,” the statement said.
The statement did not mention the release of Palestinian prisoners being held in Israeli prisons, although according to previously disclosed sources, this is an important part of the agreement.
More detailed information about the content of the agreement will be sent to the hostages’ families today by the Israeli government. The Israeli government pledged to continue the fight against Hamas after the four-day ceasefire.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had previously suggested the government support the agreement with Hamas, describing it as a “difficult but right” decision. The majority of 38 Israeli ministers supported the agreement, except for officials from the far-right Otzma Yehudit party and the Tkuma party.
On the same day, Hamas confirmed a 4-day “humanitarian ceasefire” in the Gaza Strip. However, Hamas added that it agreed to release about 50 women and children in exchange for Israel’s release of 150 Palestinian women and children from prisons.
The group said the ceasefire also allowed hundreds of trucks carrying humanitarian aid, medicine and fuel into the Gaza Strip. Israel pledged not to attack or capture anyone throughout the strip during the four-day ceasefire.
It is unclear when Israel and Hamas will begin implementing the agreement. This is the first ceasefire agreed since the Israel-Hamas conflict broke out on October 7.
The armed forces of Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) group in the Gaza Strip are holding about 240 hostages, mainly Israelis, after a raid on the country on October 7.
Sources from Hamas and PIJ previously said that when these two groups released hostages from the Gaza Strip, Tel Aviv also had to release about 300 Palestinian women and children being held in Israeli prisons.