Specifically, US President Joe Biden said on November 20 that he believes an agreement is close. Speaking at a press conference on the same day, White House spokesman John Kirby also expressed confidence in the ability of the parties to soon reach an agreement on hostages, Reuters reported.
Since October 7, when the conflict broke out in the Gaza Strip, Hamas gunmen have taken about 240 hostages.
Discussion of a hostage agreement has been hotly debated for several days. Reuters reported last week that Qatari mediators were pushing for a clause that would allow Hamas and Israel to exchange 50 hostages in exchange for a three-day ceasefire, to boost emergency aid shipments to civilians. usually Gaza.
Israeli Ambassador to the US Michael Herzog told ABC News over the weekend that he hoped to reach an agreement “in the coming days” while Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman al-Thani said the sticking points were The rest are “very small”.
On November 20, Ms. Mirjana Spoljaric, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), met with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar to “promote humanitarian issues” related to the conflict. In addition, she also had a private discussion with the Qatari government.
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The ICRC said the talks were not part of negotiations aimed at freeing the hostages. However, as a neutral intermediary, the organization is willing to “facilitate any future return of hostages to which the parties agree”.
However, White House deputy national security adviser Jon Finer still cautioned everyone about the possibility that the agreement would not be successful. “We really need to remember the mantra that ‘nothing is agreed until everything is agreed,'” he said.
According to Mr. Finer, sensitive negotiations like this can break down at the last minute.
In other developments, Al Jazeera news agency on November 21, citing data from the Hamas-run government in Gaza, said at least 13,300 Palestinians were killed, including at least 5,600 children and 3,550 women, due to the attacks. Israel’s relentless bombing.
At the Jakarta-funded Indonesian hospital in Gaza, Hamas said at least 12 Palestinians were killed and dozens wounded in the fighting.
World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said he was “horrified” by the attack, which he said killed 12 people, including the patient.
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Like all other medical facilities in northern Gaza, the Indonesian hospital has largely ceased operations but is still receiving patients, staff and displaced residents.