Hamas hands over ten Israelis and two foreign nationals to the Red Cross as part of an extended truce deal with Israel which also includes the release of Palestinian prisoners. 30 Palestinians, including 15 children and 15 women, were also freed from an Israeli jail in the occupied West Bank as part of the fifth phase of the prisoner exchange deal. On Monday, the two sides agreed to extend the truce deal until Wednesday under the same conditions set for the initial ceasefire. Before the latest round of exchange, Hamas had released a total of 81 captives while Israel had freed 150 Palestinian detainees. The initial ceasefire came into effect on Friday after nearly seven weeks of Israel’s constant bombardment of Gaza.
Healthcare crisis in Gaza
Health facilities in the Gaza Strip bear the brunt of Israel’s brutal war. The Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza has turned the spotlight on the dire situation of hospitals amid Israel’s blockade. The Palestinian Health Ministry spokesman also described the situation in northern Gaza as catastrophic amid lack of medicine and fuel. Al-Qudra said hospital beds are completely full and wounded people are lying on the ground. Further in his remarks, he denounced the arrest of the director of Shifa Hospital by Israeli forces.
‘End occupation of Palestine’
Iran has reiterated that ending the Israeli occupation and holding a referendum among the original inhabitants of Palestine is the only path to durable peace in West Asia. Iravani was speaking at a UN General Assembly session. The Iranian envoy said the plight of Palestinians is rooted in the historical occupation and atrocities of Israel. He also denounced settler attacks as he cited a UN committee report that brings to the fore Israeli violence against the Palestinians.
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