Israel releases more Palestiniann including Ahed Tamimi
AP || Shining BD
Israel released another group of Palestinian prisoners early Thursday in exchange for 16 hostages freed hours earlier by Hamas in Gaza. The releases came on the sixth day of a temporary truce in the Israel-Hamas war.
The latest swap for Palestinian prisoners held by Israel under the Gaza truce comes as international mediators raced to seal another extension to allow further exchanges and prolong the halt of Israel’s air and ground offensive.
A bus carrying some of the Palestinian detainees was seen arriving in the West Bank city of Ramallah before dawn. Most prominent among those freed was Ahed Tamimi, a 22-year-old activist who gained worldwide fame in 2017 after a video of her slapping an Israeli soldier went viral on social media.
Israeli troops arrested her at her West Bank home on Nov. 6 for “inciting to terrorism” on her Instagram account. Her mother said Tamimi’s account had been hacked.
On each day of the truce, hostages have been traded for Palestinian prisoners, leading to the release of a total of 97 hostages. With the Palestinian prisoners freed early Thursday to number 30, the overall total would be 210 released prisoners.
Hamas released 16 hostages late Wednesday. The Israeli military said a group of 10 Israeli women and children and four Thai nationals had been returned to Israel, where they were being taken to hospitals to be reunited with their families. Earlier, two Russian-Israeli women were freed by Hamas in a separate release.
Negotiators were working down to the wire to hammer out details for a further extension of the truce beyond its deadline of early Thursday. The talks appear to be growing tougher as most of the women and children held by Hamas are freed, and the militants are expected to seek greater releases in return for freeing men and soldiers.