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Israel-Hamas Ceasefire Extended For 2 More Days, Says Qatar

Around 20 hostages held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip are expected to be released in lieu of the release of around 30 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons.

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In this photo provided by the Israeli Army, Hila Rotem Shoshani, a released hostage, reunites with her uncle in Israel.
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The Qatari government on Monday announced that the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas has been extended for two more days. 

The four-day ceasefire, which came into effect on Friday morning, would have otherwise expired by Tuesday morning. 

"The State of Qatar announces, as part of the ongoing mediation, an agreement has been reached to extend the humanitarian pause for an additional two days in the Gaza Strip," said Majeed Al Ansari, Spokesperson of Qatar's Foreign Ministry. 

As per the terms of the deal, for every day's extension of the ceasefire, Hamas would release 10 hostages held in the Gaza Strip in lieu of the release of around 30 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons. So far, 40 Israelis, 17 Thai nationals, one Filipino, and one Russian have been released by Hamas in lieu of 117 Palestinian prisoners, according to The Jerusalem Post. 

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During the October 7 attack, Hamas and allied groups abducted around 240 persons in Israel and took them to Gaza as hostages. While Israel had instituted temporary pauses in its attacks in Gaza, it had declared the release of hostage as a prerequisite for any ceasefire. 

The extension of the ceasefire would also mark the continued delivery of ramped-up humanitarian assistance to Gaza. While aid was being delivered to Gaza for weeks, it was a trickle to compared to what the United Nations (UN) agencies had envisioned. Under the Israel-Hamas deal, negotiated by Qatar, Egypt, and the United States, 200 trucks carrying relief supplies and four trucks carrying fuel would enter Gaza every day.

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