Israel-Gaza: Hamas and IDF ‘break truce’ amid scramble to find more hostages

Moment 21-year-old hostage kidnapped from music festival reunites with family after release

Hamas and Israel have accused each other of breaking the truce agreement which has led to the release of dozens of Israelis and Palestinians.

“As a result of the enemy violating the terms of the truce today, there has been a field clash today and our mujahedeen dealt with the violation. We are committed to the truce as long as the enemy is,” Hamas military spokesperson Abu Obaida said, according to Gazan state TV.

Meanwhile, IDF spokesperson Daniel Hagari said three explosive devices were “activated” in two locations near IDF forces in northern Gaza “contrary to the ceasefire agreements”.

It comes as Hamas is searching for more Israeli hostages in Gaza as part of planned exchanges for Palestinian prisoners to allow the ceasefire deal with Israel to continue.

The four-day pause in fighting was extended on Tuesday by two days, with 51 Israelis and 18 foreigners released by Hamas since the ceasefire began, and 150 Palestinians freed by Israel.

Now, as part of the truce deal extension, more hostages look set to be released, with a list of hostages to be freed today sent to Israeli prime minister’s office.


Hamas and Israel accuse each other of breaking truce

Hamas and Israel have accused each other of breaking the truce agreement, according to reports.

“As a result of the enemy violating the terms of the truce today, there has been a field clash today and our mujahedeen dealt with the violation,” the Hamas-run TV channel al Aqsa quoted Hamas military wing spokesperson, Abu Obaida, as saying.

“We are committed to the truce as long as the enemy is.”

Meanwhile, IDF spokesperson Daniel Hagari said three explosive devices were “activated” in two locations near IDF forces in northern Gaza “contrary to the ceasefire agreements”.

“In one of the cases, shots were also fired at the force. As a result, several fighters were slightly injured. The fighters responded by firing at the sources of the gunfire,” he said.

“In both cases, the IDF forces stayed within the agreed ceasefire lines.”

Alexander Butler28 November 2023 15:07


We are pausing live coverage of this event

We are pausing live coverage of this event. Please check tomorrow for more updates.

Alexander Butler28 November 2023 16:25


Watch: Moment child hostages reunite with dog for first time since release from Hamas captivity

Moment child hostages reunite with dog for first time since release from Hamas captivity

Alexander Butler28 November 2023 16:01


Palestinian women and teenagers released from Israeli prisons as part of the exchange deal told The Independent of their joy to be home, but also about the sharp deterioration of conditions in jail, after Hamas’s bloody attack on 7 October, chief international correspondent Bel Trew reports.

Many of the released Palestinians the Independent spoke to are being held in administrative detention which means there is no charge or trial and detention can be extended indefinitely.

Israel said this is necessary for security and counterterrorism activities. Amnesty International, which has called for all Palestinian prisoners who are arbitrarily held to be released separate to hostage deals, said there has been dramatic surge in the use of administrative detention since Hamas’ 7 October bloody attacks.

The organisation said administrative detention “is one of the key tools through which Israel has enforced its system of apartheid against Palestinians”, a characterisation that Israel has vehemently rejected.

Palestinian rights groups say it deprives Palestinians their right to fair trial which constitutes a grave violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and may amount to a war crime – a point that Israel has also denied.

Palestinian rights groups and prison monitoring groups said there are now 2,200 Palestinians in administrative detention, a historic high.

Hanan al-Barghouti, 59, the oldest detainee to be released in the truce deal with Israel, said she was arrested in a dawn raid on her home in September – a full month before the war – and has been held since without no charge or trial.

Speaking from her home outside of Ramallah, she said more than 15 members of her extended family are also in administrative detention which she called “collective punishment”.

Her brother Nael al-Barghouti – is the longest-serving Palestinian prisoner and has been in and out of detention since he was first arrested 44 years ago for engaging in attacks against Israeli military. He was re-arrested in 2014 for “Hamas membership” according to Israeli media.

Mrs Barghouti said conditions in Damon prison for women where she was being held, rapidly deteriorated after 7 October attack by Hamas.

Firstly all family visits and visits by international rights groups were stopped. “Then took everything we already paid for, everything you can imagine salt, sugar, cans, books, they closed the prison shop. They took the radios and TVs so we did not know what was happening the outside world.

“They took all the shoes. One male soldier put one of the woman restraining hold, took the shoes from her feet and beat her. They cut all the electricity and they left only one light,” she said.

The Independent has reached out to the Israeli prison service and the military and has yet to get a reply.

Alexander Butler28 November 2023 14:00


Before-and-after photo shows medical volunteer’s demolished Gaza home

The Israel-Hamas war has had devastating consequences for Gaza’s civilian population.

A photo shared by the Palestine Red Crescent shows medical volunteer Osama Al-Kahlot’s destroyed home.

Josh Marcus28 November 2023 13:00


ICYMI: Abigail, 4-year-old American hostage, reunites with family

President Joe Biden denounced the “unthinkable” actions of Hamas after a four-year-old girl with American citizenship whose parents were killed by terrorists last month was released from inside Gaza on Sunday as part of a hostage agreement.

That four-day truce is currently underway in the northern Gaza Strip where Israeli forces have been bombarding the city for weeks; Hamas militants, following a shockingly bloody attack that killed roughly 1,200 across southern Israel last month, continue to hold dozens of hostages within the Palestinian territory.

On Sunday, Israel confirmed that Abigail Edan, four, had been among hostages released by the militant group into the care of the Red Cross. Her immediate condition was unknown.

“Thank God she is home,” Mr Biden said of Abigail on Sunday, as he addressed Americans from Nantucket. “What she endured is unthinkable.”

John Bowden has the story.

Josh Marcus28 November 2023 12:00


Family of missing 10-month-old boy call for his ‘immediate release’

The family of a 10-month-old boy feared missing in Gaza has urged negotiators to release him as soon as possible.

Offri Bibas, who is the auntie of 10-month-old Kfir, said she feared he could be without formula or proper food.

It comes as an Israel-Hamas truce is set to expire on Wednesday before hostilities in Gaza are due to resume.

“He can’t stay there anymore. He is a 10-month-old baby. We don’t know if he is getting formula. There isn’t much food,” Ms Bibas said.

“Every day there is a risk for their mental and physical condition. They must be released. They are children; they are not supposed to be hostages.”

Kfir was kidnapped along with his four-year-old brother Ariel and his parents Yarden, 34, and Shiri, 32, from Kibbutz Nir Oz after Hamas massacred up to 1,200 Israelis on 7 October.

On Monday, the Israel Defence Forces said the Bibas family was transferred by Hamas to another Palestinian militant group in Gaza and they are being held in Khan Younis in the south of Gaza.

Aylon Keshet, who is the cousin of Mr Bibas, added that the family was living through a “nightmare” and didn’t know “anything” about their condition.

He said: “These are real people with real lives. Please do not let them stay for another day. Do not let Hamas keep using them as bargaining chips.

“We really don’t know anything. We are in the dark here. We don’t know anything about their wellbeing or condition.

“This is a nightmare scenario for us. The uncertainty is really hard. We are worried sick about them.”

Ten-month-old Kfir Bibas, who was kidnapped by Hamas on 7 October


Four-year-old Ariel Bibas, who was kidnapped by Hamas on 7 October


Alexander Butler28 November 2023 11:57


After antisemitism scandal, Elon Musk visits Israel

Elon Musk toured a kibbutz attacked by Hamas on Monday during his visit to Israel. It follows an outcry over his endorsement of an antisemitic conspiracy theory on his social media platform, Twitter/X.

The world’s richest man met Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and visited the Kfar Aza kibbutz, which Hamas attacked on 7 October, killing an estimated 52 residents. Another 20 people are reported as missing.

It was the home of four-year-old American-Israeli citizen Abigail Edan, who was taken hostage after her parents were killed by the militant group during the attack. Abigail was reunited with members of her family on Sunday as part of the hostage exchange.

Mr Musk said witnessing the scenes of the massacre was “jarring”, during a live event on Twitter/X with Mr Neetanyahu after the tour.

Ariana Baio has the story.

Josh Marcus28 November 2023 11:00


Met Police investigating reports of war crimes in Gaza

The Metropolitan Police is investigating reports of war crimes committed in Gaza.

Scotland Yard’s war crimes unit is collaborating with the International Criminal Court to investigate any war crimes committed by Israel or Hamas in the region since 7 October.

The unit has received over 20 referrals, including those made by individuals recently returned from Gaza, since the conflict began.

In one case, the force has contacted a leading surgeon who worked in Al-Shifa and Al-Alhi hospitals for nearly two months to give testimony of potential war crimes.

Alexander Butler28 November 2023 10:35


‘If they get additional women and children, there will be an extension’

The words of Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani in an interview with the Financial Times before the truce extension was agreed by Hamas and Israel.

He was talking about Hamas requiring more hostages to complete the exchanges for Palestinian prisoners as set out as part of the truce agreement.

Sheikh Mohammed said that more than 40 other women and children were being kept captive in Gaza, but not inthe hands of Hamas. The Independent understands that figure to be more than 100 for all hostages.

Speaking before Monday’s truce extension, Sheikh Mohammed said: “If they get additional women and children, there will be an extension

“We don’t yet have any clear information how many they can find because . . . one of the purposes [of the pause] is they [Hamas] will have time to search for the rest of the missing people.”

Israel had provided Qatar with a list of more than 90 women and children seized during Hamas’ attack on 7 October, says the FT.

Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani

(Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Alex Ross28 November 2023 10:22

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