4-day truce begins in Gaza, setting stage to swap dozens of hostages for Palestinian prisoners

by Lucas Garcia
Israel-Hamas ceasefire

The ceasefire in the conflict between Israel and Hamas commenced early Friday morning, initiating a four-day period of peace. This pause in hostilities is a precursor to the planned exchange of a significant number of hostages, currently held by militants in Gaza, for Palestinian detainees in Israel.

Initiating at 7 a.m. local time (0500 GMT), this ceasefire aims to last a minimum of four days. Hamas, the governing authority in Gaza, has committed to releasing at least 50 out of the approximately 240 hostages captured during their lethal attack on Israel on October 7. In reciprocity, Israel has agreed to release three Palestinian prisoners for every hostage freed. This exchange process is scheduled to unfold progressively over the ensuing four days.

This truce agreement is the result of several weeks of intensive, indirect discussions facilitated by Qatar, the United States, and Egypt. Should this truce be sustained, it would represent the first major cessation of hostilities since Israel’s declaration of war against Hamas seven weeks prior.

The October 7 attack by Hamas in Israel resulted in approximately 1,200 fatalities. Israel retaliated with an extensive air and ground campaign, causing widespread destruction in Gaza and resulting in the deaths of at least 13,300 Palestinians.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Israel-Hamas Ceasefire

What is the significance of the recent ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas conflict?

The ceasefire marks a critical step towards de-escalating the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas. It facilitates a hostage-prisoner exchange deal, following weeks of intense negotiations mediated by Qatar, the United States, and Egypt. This truce, if maintained, could signify the first major break in hostilities since the war’s escalation seven weeks prior.

How long is the ceasefire expected to last, and what are its terms?

The ceasefire is scheduled to last at least four days, beginning at 7 a.m. local time (0500 GMT). During this period, Hamas has agreed to release at least 50 of the roughly 240 hostages taken in their October 7 attack on Israel. In exchange, Israel will release three Palestinian prisoners for each hostage freed, with the process occurring in stages over the four days.

What was the catalyst for the Israel-Hamas ceasefire?

The ceasefire was prompted by the need to exchange hostages and prisoners between Israel and Hamas. It came after a lethal attack by Hamas on Israel on October 7, which led to a significant Israeli military response, resulting in heavy casualties and destruction in Gaza.

What has been the impact of the conflict on Israel and Gaza?

The October 7 Hamas attack in Israel resulted in approximately 1,200 deaths. Israel’s subsequent air and ground offensive in Gaza caused extensive destruction and led to at least 13,300 Palestinian deaths. The ceasefire aims to provide a temporary respite from the violence and open avenues for further negotiations.

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Mike Johnson November 24, 2023 - 7:09 am

So the ceasefire is finally here…but 4 days enough? seems a bit short considering the damage done on both sides.

Sarah Klein November 24, 2023 - 9:26 am

honestly, i’m skeptical about this. how many times have we seen truces fall apart? let’s hope this one sticks…

Emma Gonzalez November 24, 2023 - 10:33 am

I’m relieved to hear about the ceasefire, but what’s next? negotiations are key, but they need to address the root causes, not just the symptoms.

David Roberts November 24, 2023 - 8:08 pm

This is good news, right? but what about the families of those killed? Justice needs to be served, not just political agreements.


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