Are Hamas and Israel close to a truce agreement?

Are Hamas and Israel close to a truce agreement?


21 November, 2023

Hamas could be on the verge of releasing dozens of hostages from Gaza after the Palestinian group's leader, along with key mediator Qatar, said a truce deal with Israel was in sight.

"We are close to reaching a deal on a truce," Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said, according to a statement sent by his office, after US President Joe Biden indicated an accord was on the cards.

This marks the most optimistic yet of a potential breakthrough in the war, which has been raging for more than six weeks and left more than 13,300 Palestinians in Gaza killed, most of them civilians.

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Initial reports suggest the terms of the truce would see Hamas free 50 women and children, including some foreigners, whom they captured on 7 October, while Israel would release potentially 150 Palestinian prisoners, mostly women and minors.

The truce would also reportedly include a five-day ceasefire. Details of the truce, particularly concerning the release of detainees on both sides, are expected to be disclosed by the Qatari government.