Hamas released two hostages on Monday, 23 October, following negotiations with Egypt and Qatar. The names of the hostages are Nurit Cooper and Yocheved Lifshitz, an Israeli government official confirmed to CBS.
This comes after Hamas released two American women on Friday, 20 October.
This is a developing story.
THE CONFLICT SO FAR
After a surprise attack conducted on 7 October by Hamas on a number of southern Israeli towns which resulted in the deaths of an estimated 1,200 people and more than 200 being taken ‘hostage’ by Hamas, Israel launched a retaliatory bombing campaign against what it describes as ‘terrorist targets’ in the Gaza Strip.
So far, more than 5,000 Palestinians have been killed in the Gaza Strip — over 1,000 of them children — and 15,273 others injured. Meanwhile 91 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank and 1,250 have been injured.
The priority of the Egyptian government since the beginning of the conflict has been deescalation and the securing of a path for aid to enter the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing. Israel bombed the crossing at least four times, and three aid conveys have crossed to Gaza so far.
Most Western countries, with the United States at the forefront, have expressed unconditional support for Israel, despite the steadily rising death toll in Gaza. Meanwhile, Arab governments have called for an immediate ceasefire.