Hamas confirmed Saturday that the second release under a truce agreement of Israeli hostages captured in the October 7 attacks will go ahead after a delay.
Hamas had “responded positively” to Egyptian and Qatari mediators to ensure the continuation of the truce agreement, it said in a statement, after they relayed a promise by Israel to “uphold all the conditions of the accord”.
Hamas had earlier delayed the release of the group, accusing Israel of breaching the terms of the agreement regarding the delivery of humanitarian aid to the north of the Gaza Strip and the selection of Palestinian prisoners for release. The Palestinian group wanted the selection based on time spent in detention.
It also accused Israeli forces of firing on people trying to cross from the southern part of the Gaza Strip to the north, which Israeli forces have forbidden.
The UN humanitarian agency OCHA said in a situation report early Saturday that in “several reported incidents” on Friday, “Israeli forces opened fire and threw teargas canisters at people heading northwards; at least one person was reportedly killed, and dozens injured”.
The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said seven people had been wounded in similar incidents on Saturday.
However, Israeli officials denied any breach of the terms of the pause. (AFP)