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Waiting for the hostages: Israel's army at a helipad in Petah Tikva (photo from the day before)


Another group of hostages belonging to the terrorist organization Hamas was not handed over to Israel on Saturday as planned. The new exchange for Israeli prisoners had actually been expected for 15 p.m. CET. More than an hour later, Israeli media reported a "technical" delay. It was initially unclear when the planned handover process would start.

According to Reuters, Hamas' military-terrorist wing decided not to carry out the swap as planned. According to the report, Israel should first allow trucks with humanitarian aid to enter the north of the Gaza Strip.

It was expected that the group would be handed over to staff of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), as it had been the day before in the Gaza Strip, and then cross the border into Egypt. From there, the hostages were to be taken to Israel by helicopter after an initial medical examination.

There were differing reports on the exact number of hostages who were to be released on Saturday. Israeli media reported last-minute negotiations on whether to release 13 or 14 hostages. However, it was unclear whether the negotiations were also the reason for the delay.

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