CIA, Mossad chiefs fly to Qatar for Gaza truce talk

The directors of the CIA and Mossad have traveled to Qatar for negotiations aimed at extending the Gaza truce, with a primary objective of securing the release of male hostages held by Hamas.

Publication: 29.11.2023 - 14:16
CIA, Mossad chiefs fly to Qatar for Gaza truce talk
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William Burns of the CIA and Mossad's David Barnea are set to meet with the Qatari leadership to discuss strategies for convincing Hamas to release the male hostages.

The most recent hostage exchange, completed late Tuesday, involved the transfer of 10 Israeli citizens and two Thai nationals from Gaza. In return, Israel released 30 Palestinians in Ramallah and Jerusalem. According to Qatar's foreign ministry, which is facilitating these talks, the released hostages included nine women and one minor. The al-Quds Brigades, the armed wing of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement, released several hostages. The Palestinian Prisoners Club, a local NGO, reported that the freed Palestinians consisted of 15 women and 15 male teenagers.

Anticipation is high for another exchange on Wednesday. Israeli media indicate that Benjamin Netanyahu’s office has a list of the Israeli hostages Hamas plans to release.

Israel has indicated a willingness to extend the truce, conditional on Hamas's continued release of at least 10 Israeli hostages daily. Egyptian media report that an agreement to prolong the truce under the current terms is in principle.

The ceasefire, which commenced last Friday, was initially set for four days to facilitate the exchange of 50 hostages for 150 Palestinian prisoners held by Israel. An agreement on Monday extended this arrangement by two more days, until Wednesday. Under this extension, Hamas agreed to release 10 hostages for each additional day.

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