Members of the Qassam Brigades during the handover of detainees as part of the exchange of the second batch on Saturday (French)

The Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) announced on Sunday that it had released a detainee of Russian nationality and handed him over to the Red Cross as part of the third batch that began to be implemented today as part of the prisoner and detainee exchange agreement with Israel.

Hamas said in a statement on its official website: "In response to the efforts of Russian President Vladimir Putin and in appreciation of the Russian position in support of the Palestinian cause, we released one of the detainees who holds Russian citizenship."

On the 29th of last month, Israel summoned the Russian ambassador to protest Moscow's reception of a Hamas delegation.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry said at the time that its senior staff had told Ambassador Anatoly Viktorov that Hamas's invitation sent a message legitimizing what it called terrorism against Israelis, describing the summons as a protest rather than a rebuke.

Israel and Hamas began implementing the handover of a third batch of prisoners and detainees on Sunday under a truce deal that went into effect on Friday and runs until Monday.

For its part, the head of the State Information Service, Diaa Rashwan, announced in a statement that the SIS "received the list of detainees in the Gaza Strip, which includes 13 Israelis. It also received the list of Palestinians to be released from Israeli prisons, which includes 39 Palestinians."

Source: Agencies