Israel-Hamas latest updates: Gaza truce extended by two days, Qatar claims

SpaceX owner Elon Musk visited Israel on Monday, as Hamas and a number of other governments pushed for a ceasefire extension.

Elon Musk at Kibbutz Kfar Aza  2711
Elon Musk joined Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu for a tour of Kibbutz Kfar Aza, which was targeted on 7 October (Reuters)

Qatar's foreign ministry has claimed the truce in Gaza has been extended for two more days.

It has not been specified how many hostages would be released, but earlier the head of Egypt's State Information Service, Diaa Rashwan, said the deal being negotiated would include the release of 20 Israeli hostages. In exchange 60 Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails would be freed.

There was no immediate comment from Israel, but a White House official confirmed agreement had been reached

.An Israeli official had previously reiterated it would agree to an extra day of truce for the release of each group of 10 hostages. In exchange, three times the number of Palestinian prisoners would be released each time.

A Hamas official said in a phone call with the Reuters news agency: "An agreement has been reached with the brothers in Qatar and Egypt to extend the temporary humanitarian truce by two more days, with the same conditions as in the previous truce."

On Sunday, Hamas freed 17 people, including a four-year-old Israeli-American girl, bringing the total to 58. Israel has released 117 Palestinian prisoners.

The truce was the first halt in fighting in the seven weeks since Hamas attacked Israel, killing 1,200 people and taking about 240 hostages back into Gaza.

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  • Yahoo News Uk

    UN chief calls for Gaza truce to become longer humanitarian ceasefire

    United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres speaks at the United Nations prior to a meeting about the ongoing conflict in Gaza. (Reuters)

    United Nations secretary general Antonio Guterres pushed for a full humanitarian ceasefire between Israel and Hamas instead of a temporary truce.

    He made the call on Monday, adding that the "humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza is getting worse by the day".

    Qatar, Hamas and a White House official have said an agreement to extend a four-day truce - which was due to expire tonight - had been reached, but Israel is yet to comment publicly.

    "The dialogue that led to the agreement must continue, resulting in a full humanitarian ceasefire, for the benefit of the people of Gaza, Israel and the wider region," Guterres' spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.

    "The United Nations will continue to support these efforts in every possible way," he added.

    Guterres again called for the hostages held by Hamas to be released immediately and unconditionally.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    Israeli hostage, 84, released by Hamas is now 'fighting for her life'

    An 84-year-old woman who was kidnapped from her kibbutz on 7 October and held hostage is in a 'fight for her life' after being released on Sunday evening.

    Elma Avraham's daughter told reporters her mother arrived with a pulse of 40 and a body temperature of 28 degrees after she was released on Sunday night.

    The deputy administrator of Soroka hospital in Beersheba said her condition remains critical and she is ventilated and sedated in the intensive care unit.

    "They held her in terrible conditions," daughter Tali Amano told reporters outside the hospital. "My mother arrived hours before we would have lost her."

    Amano said while her mother had chronic health conditions, they were entirely in check. She says she pleaded with the Red Cross to bring her medications, which they refused.

    "We have been meeting directly with families and they have urged us to take possession of personal medications, but we're not able to take them," a Red Cross spokesperson said, adding that a doctor accompanied Avraham on the journey from Gaza.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    White House confirms agreement to extend ceasefire has been reached

    Israel is yet to comment on an extension of the ceasefire in Gaza, but a US official has confirmed an agreement has been reached.

    Hamas also said it had agreed a two-day extension to the truce with Qatar and Egypt, who have been facilitating indirect negotiations between the two sides.

    "An agreement has been reached with the brothers in Qatar and Egypt to extend the temporary humanitarian truce by two more days, with the same conditions as in the previous truce," a Hamas official said.

    Qatar, which has been mediating talks, also said the ceasefire, which was due to end on Monday night, had been extended for two days.

    None of the announcements specified how many hostages would be released, but earlier the head of Egypt's State Information Service, Diaa Rashwan, said the deal being negotiated would include the release of 20 Israeli hostages in exchange for 60 Palestinian prisoners.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    US and allies set up taskforce to block flow of money to Hamas

    Israel launched a ferocious air and land assault on Gaza after an unprecedented attack by Hamas on 7 October. (Reuters)

    The US, along with several allies, have set up an international task force aimed at countering the flow of money to Hamas, and to support other anti-terror efforts.

    Since 1,200 people were killed in the 7 October attack on Israel, UK and allies have sought to cut off funding for Hamas.

    The Islamist group has been designated a terrorist organisation by the UK, US and a number of other governments.

    The new task force will enhance sharing of financial intelligence on terrorist-financing related matters and will discuss best practices and opportunities for additional actions and partnerships, the US Treasury Department said.

    It will also strengthen relations between the financial intelligence units, public authorities and the private sector to address the threat, it added.

    The task force is made up of financial intelligence units from Australia, Canada, Estonia, France, Germany, Israel, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Switzerland, the UK and the US, as well as other units.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    FBI investigating hate crime motive after shooting of three Palestinian students

    Federal law enforcement agencies are investigating whether the shooting of three Palestinian college students in Vermont was a hate crime.

    US Attorney General Merrick Garland, in remarks from New York on Monday addressing the work of the US Department of Justice to combat hate-fuelled violence, confirmed the FBI and ATF have launched investigations in the wake of Saturday’s shooting.

    A white gunman fired at the three men, all in their 20s, at least four times without saying anything while they were walking near the University of Vermont, according to police. The students were speaking English and Arabic and wearing keffiyehs.

    Read the full story from The Independent here.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    Arab countries and the EU agree two-state solution is key to solving crisis

    Palestinians walk amid debris of buildings hit in Israeli strikes, near Al-Zawiya market in Gaza City. (Getty Images)

    Arab states and the European Union agreed at a meeting in Spain on Monday that a two-state solution was the answer to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

    EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said the Palestinian Authority, which has partial control over parts of the West Bank, should rule Gaza.

    Borrell said all EU members attending the meeting of Mediterranean nations in Barcelona and almost all attendees overall had agreed on the need for a two-state solution – an independent Palestinian state existing alongside Israel.

    The Palestinian Authority must hold elections and improve its functioning but is the only "viable solution" to the future leadership of Gaza, currently run by Hamas Islamists, to avoid a "power vacuum," he said.

    Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said the Palestinian people should decide who rules them, and that any talk of administration of Gaza after the conflict should focus on the West Bank and Gaza as one entity.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    Breaking: Israel and Hamas agree to extend truce for two more days

    The temporary ceasefire in Gaza has been extended for two more days following an agreement between Israel and Hamas.

    It was announced this afternoon by the Qatari government, which has been acting as a mediator in negotiations to release hostages and prisoners.

    "An agreement has been reached to extend the humanitarian truce for an additional two days in the Gaza Strip," a foreign ministry spokesperson said in post on social media platform X.

  • Yahoo News Uk

    Prisoner releases send Hamas support rocketing in West Bank

    In Palestinian cities in the occupied West Bank, long the turf of president Mahmud Abbas's Fatah party, the green flag of Islamist rival Hamas is flying ever higher thanks to prisoner-hostage exchanges.

    For three nights, Palestinians have celebrated the return of dozens of detainees freed from Israeli jails, in exchange for women and children seized during October 7 attacks by Hamas fighters.

    That has seen the popularity of Hamas soar in the West Bank, run by Abbas's Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority (PA).

    Read the full story here from AFP

  • Yahoo News Uk

    Hostages released by Hamas are seen through the window of a bus transporting them to an army base in Ofakim, southern Israel, in the third phase of the releases (Menahem KAHANA)

    As clock ticks down, calls mount for new truce

    International pressure mounted on Monday for Hamas and Israel to extend their truce, as the clock ticked on a pause in fighting that has allowed for the release of scores of hostages and prisoners.

    After US President Joe Biden said the pause should continue to allow humanitarian relief into Gaza and more Israeli hostages to return home to their families, senior European Union and NATO officials added their voices to his call.

    If no extension is agreed the temporary truce is due to expire at 7:00 am (0500 GMT) on Tuesday, threatening a return to intense fighting after the four-day pause.

    Read the latest updates from the AFP news agency here

  • Yahoo News Uk

    Israel reprimand ‘bit of an overreaction’

    Ireland’s further education minister, Simon Harris, has said Israel’s decision to summon the Irish ambassador for a reprimand over comments made by the country’s premier was “a bit of an overreaction”.

    Israel took issue with Taoiseach Leo Varadkar saying an “an innocent child who was lost has now been found” after Hamas released nine-year-old Irish-Israeli hostage Emily Hand

    Israel’s foreign minister, Eli Cohen, said the child had been kidnapped and the comments were an attempt to “legitimise and normalise terror”.

    Mr Cohen posted on X at Mr Varadkar: “Mr Prime Minister, It seems you have lost your moral compass and need a reality check!

    “Emily Hand was not ‘lost’, she was kidnapped by a terror organisation worse than Isis that murdered her stepmother.

    “Emily and more than 30 other Israeli children were taken hostage by Hamas, and you @LeoVaradkar are trying to legitimise and normalise terror. Shame on you!”

    Speaking to RTE radio on Monday, Mr Harris said Ireland is “utterly elated” at the child’s release.

    “This is a complete distraction. Emily Hand, the little girl, is free. She’s been 50 days in captivity.”

    Read the full story here