13 Israelis and 4 others were released in the latest Israel-Hamas swap of captives

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In the year Updated November 26, 2023 at 11:51 am ET

TEL AVIV, Israel – A 4-year-old girl whose parents were killed in an October 7 attack on Israel was freed by her Hamas captors on Sunday, along with 12 other Israelis, three Thais and a Russian national.

As part of the exchange, Israel is expected to release 39 Palestinians.

The young girl, Abigail Edan, turned 4 in exile on Friday. She is a dual American-Israeli citizen. The unidentified Russian, who also holds dual Israeli citizenship, was initially released “in appreciation of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s efforts and Russia’s stance in support of the Palestinian cause,” Hamas said in an earlier statement. The others were released from prison.

In two previous exchanges, Hamas released 26 Israeli and 14 Thai workers, as well as a Filipino. In exchange, Israel freed 78 Palestinian prisoners.

Tens of thousands of Thai and Filipino workers work in Israel. Israel was killed in the Oct. 7 attack and dozens of others were among the 1,200 that Hamas said had taken about 240 hostages. Gaza’s health ministry says 13,300 Palestinians have been killed in seven weeks of Israeli bombardment on the territory.

The latest prisoner exchange comes amid signs of rising violence in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, where Israeli forces killed five people in an operation at a refugee camp there. Three others were killed elsewhere in the region, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

On Saturday, a second prisoner exchange came close to resolving what Hamas said was a violation of an Israeli truce that briefly halted the war in Gaza. Israel denies any such violations.

Oren Ziv/AFP via Getty Images


AFP via Getty Images

Relatives of notorious Palestinian prisoner Israa Jaabis visited her home in East Jerusalem early Sunday after prisoners released by Hamas were released from Israeli prisons.

Among the inmates released on Saturday was 9-year-old Emily Hand. Her father, Thomas Hand, was said to have been killed in the attack. Will be told later. Her body was not found among the victims.

“After 50 challenging and complicated days, we cannot find words to express our feelings,” Thomas Hand said in a statement to the report. Forum of hostages and missing families.

English teacher Tariq al-Anabi at a UN-run school in Rafah, Gaza Strip on Sunday - the third day of a temporary ceasefire between Hamas and Israel.

English teacher Tariq al-Anabi at a UN-run school in Rafah, Gaza Strip on Sunday – the third day of a temporary ceasefire between Hamas and Israel.

Before the temporary truce began, humanitarian aid groups were rushing to aid civilians in a relatively quiet situation on the ground in Gaza, which had been under relentless Israeli bombardment for seven weeks.

Israeli military officials issued a warning to Palestinian civilians in Gaza on Sunday, ordering them to stay south and not travel within half a mile of the border with Israel.

On the other hand, the Palestinian Ministry of Health reported that at least eight Palestinian civilians were killed by Israeli forces in the West Bank occupied by Israel in the last 24 hours.

“It’s good that we have an agreement on Gaza, but there is no agreement on the West Bank,” said Basil Abu Nasser, a shopkeeper in the Qalandiya refugee camp near Ramallah. They are still raiding our villages, they are still raiding our refugee camps… detaining and attacking people.

Aman Nafa, whose husband was imprisoned by Israelis, told NPR that the violence by Israeli soldiers and settlers has angered many of her Palestinian neighbors.

“We want the whole world to see what they’re doing to us,” Nafa told NPR.

The Israeli army says its soldiers have killed five Palestinians in an exchange of fire in the Jenin refugee camp. caught upA Palestinian suspected of killing an Israeli father and son earlier this year

Israel Defense Forces Major Doron Spielman said in a statement posted on the social media site Social Media X on Saturday that the IDF is trying to limit the threat to Israeli civilians after a deadly attack by Hamas.

“We have been focused on Gaza, but this has been a multi-front war in the last five weeks,” Spielman said. He also pointed to the threat of Hezbollah. An Iranian-backed anti-Israel militia operating in southern Lebanon.

Israeli officials have said they plan to resume an all-out offensive against Hamas in Gaza after a temporary truce expires.

Basil Abu Nasser, a trader in the Qaladia refugee camp in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, says violence is escalating. "There is no agreement in the West Bank." he said.

Tanya Habjouqua/NOOR for NPR


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Basil Abu Nasser, a trader in the Qaladia refugee camp in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, says violence is escalating. “There is no reconciliation in the West Bank.

UN officials said in a statement early Sunday that they hoped the ceasefire would be extended. “The longer the delay, the more aid agencies can send to Gaza and beyond.” Declaration of the United Nations he said.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said on Saturday that 200 aid trucks had been sent and 187 had entered Gaza by 7:00 a.m. local time. He explained that most of the aid went to the southern areas.

OCHA says 1.7 million people in Gaza, or nearly 80% of its 2.2 million people, are internally displaced and nearly 900,000 are sheltering in 100 facilities in the south.

Monday’s prisoner exchange will be the last under the original truce. But Israel has said it is willing to extend the deal for up to 10 days if Hamas continues to release hostages.

Citing an unnamed Egyptian official source, Al-Qaira News reported that Egypt, Qatar and the United States, which played key roles in brokering the interim truce, are trying to extend the ceasefire.

NPR’s Brian Mann reports from Ramallah in the West Bank. NPR’s Scott Neuman contributed from Tel Aviv.

Copyright 2023 NPR. Visit https://www.npr.org to see more.

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