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'It's only a start': Biden comments on Israel and Hamas hostages release

'It's only a start': Biden comments on Israel and Hamas hostages release President of the United States Joe Biden (Photo: Getty Images)
Author: Daria Shekina

President of the United States Joe Biden stated that today's release of hostages between Israel and Hamas is just the beginning of the process, reports The Guardian.

President of the United States, Joe Biden, has stated that as of this morning, in accordance with an agreement achieved through extensive U.S. diplomacy, combat operations will be halted for four days to allow for the release of over 50 hostages.

"It’s only a start, but so far it’s gone well," emphasized Biden.

He highlights that he has repeatedly spoken with the Emir of Qatar, President of Egypt Sisi, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "to confirm the elements of the engagement."

"Today has been a product of 'a lot of hard work and weeks of personal engagement,'" said Biden, adding that he and his team have been working "around the clock" to secure the release of the hostages since their initial capture.

The American leader notes that all the hostages released today have undergone a "terrible" ordeal and that this is the "beginning of a long journey of healing."

"We expect more hostages to be released tomorrow. And more the day after, and more the day after that. Over the next few days, we expect that dozens of hostages will be returned to their families," he said.

Biden adds that he will not stop until all the remaining hostages in the Gaza Strip are returned home.

Hostage release and temporary ceasefire

On November 24, Hamas militants released the first group of hostages after the start of a four-day ceasefire with Israel. Former captives were sent to the Rafah border crossing between the Gaza Strip and Egypt.

In particular, as per the agreement, Hamas released 13 hostages who were Israeli citizens. Mothers and children were handed over to Red Cross workers. Additionally, Hamas released 10 citizens of Thailand and one citizen of the Philippines from captivity.

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Galant previously stated that the ceasefire with Hamas would be short-lived.

For more details on Israel's agreement with Hamas and the duration of the ongoing conflict, read the article by RBC-Ukraine.