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14 Israelis, three Thais freed from Gaza on third day of truce

One of the released women was evacuated to Soroka Medical Center in Beersheva in serious condition.

Red Cross vehicles carry released hostages at the Rafah Crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip, Nov. 26, 2023. Photo by Atia Mohammed/Flash90.
Red Cross vehicles carry released hostages at the Rafah Crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip, Nov. 26, 2023. Photo by Atia Mohammed/Flash90.

Hamas released 13 Israeli women and children, 1 Russian-Israeli man and 3 Thais held hostage in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, the third day of a truce between Jerusalem and the Palestinian terrorist organization.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office named the Israelis freed on Sunday as Abigail Edan, 4; Alma Avraham, 84; Adrienne (Aviva) Siegel, 62; Roni Krivoi, 25; Hagar Brodetz, 40; Ofri Brodetz, 10; Yuval Brodetz, 8; Oriya Brodetz, 4; Chen Goldstein-Almog, 48, Agam Goldstein-Almog, 17; Gal Goldstein-Almog, 11; Tal Goldstein-Almog, 7; Dafna Elyakim, 15; and Ela Elyakim, 8.

One of the released women was immediately evacuated to Soroka Medical Center in Beersheva, the Israel Defense Forces said, with Army Radio reporting that her condition was listed as serious.

Earlier on Sunday, the White House expressed hope that Edan, a dual U.S. citizen, would be freed.

“We have reason to believe that at least one American held by Hamas. will be released today. We hope Abigail Edan will be released but we can’t know for sure until it happens,” White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told NBC News on Sunday.

Abigail Mor Edan turned 4 in captivity on Friday after terrorists murdered her parents at Kibbutz Kfar Aza on Oct. 7.

Hamas confirmed on Sunday that it released an extra Israeli hostage with Russian citizenship—Krivoi. The terrorist group said in a statement that the move comes “in response to the efforts of Russian President Vladimir Putin and in appreciation of the Russian position in support of the Palestinian cause.”

Under the four-day ceasefire agreement, Hamas freed a first group of 13 Israelis on Friday, along with 11 foreign nationals, and a second group of 13 Israelis on Saturday, along with four foreign nationals.

Hamas was accused of violating the terms of the agreement to keep families together when 12-year-old Hila Rotem Shoshani’s mother, Raya Rotem, was not among the Israeli hostages released on Saturday.

A total of 26 Israeli and 15 foreign abductees—14 Thais and one Filipino—returned to Israel on Friday and Saturday. There are believed to be around 180 abductees still in captivity in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen on Sunday visited the citizens of Thailand and the Philippines who were released from Hamas captivity.

“We are committed to the return of all abductees, Israelis and foreigners alike,” he said.

“Israelis and foreign citizens alike shared a common fate in the face of a brutal enemy on that black Sabbath [of Oct. 7]. We are working with all parties to bring about the release of all captives in the hands of the Hamas terrorist organization, which still holds women, children and the elderly, as well as other foreign citizens,” Cohen said.

Cohen is expected to meet with his Thai counterpart later this week.

Hamas terrorists kidnapped some 240 people during the terrorist organization’s murderous assault on southern Israel on Oct. 7.

Under the terms of the deal, approved by the Israeli Cabinet last Wednesday, Hamas is to release 12 to 13 hostages each day of the truce. The release of every additional 10 hostages will result in one additional day in the pause in combat, up to five days.

Under the agreement, the IDF is to refrain from using surveillance drones in Gaza for six hours each day of the ceasefire. Israel will also allow fuel to enter the Strip during that time and dramatically increase the volume of goods permitted into the enclave.

Israel also agreed to commute the sentences of at least 150 female and teenage Palestinian security prisoners, or three terrorists for every hostage released.

So far, 117 Palestinian terrorists have been released from Israeli jails. On Friday, Jerusalem freed 39 Palestinian terrorists. Another 39 were released on Saturday, with another 39 set free on Sunday evening.

The list of terrorists released on Sunday included 21 residents of eastern Jerusalem, as well as 17 terrorists from Judea and Samaria. Sunday’s list included one Gaza resident, who was returned to the coastal enclave through the Kerem Shalom Crossing at the southeastern corner of the Gaza Strip.

Hamas announced in a statement on Sunday, that it is hoping to extend the truce beyond the initial four-day period in order to secure the release of additional Palestinian terrorists.

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