Israel-Hamas War Continues As Hostage Release Delayed

There was no cessation of hostilities in Gaza Thursday despite the previous day’s announcement of a ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas. War continued for at least another day as the truce was delayed.

Israeli officials announced that the initial ceasefire in the conflict would not commence until Friday, and clouds of smoke could be seen across the area.

Israeli National Security Adviser Tzachi Hanegbi issued a statement confirming “the negotiations on the release of our hostages are advancing and continuing constantly. The start of the release will take place according to the original agreement between the sides, and not before Friday.”

The agreement calls for the release of 50 women and children abducted by Hamas terrorists in the Oct. 7 attack. They will be exchanged for 150 Palestinians incarcerated by Israel on various charges.

There is reportedly an agreement that the truce may be extended one day for every 10 Israeli hostages freed. Both combatants declared warfare will resume when the truce concludes.

Many observers believed the ceasefire would begin more quickly. However, Qatar’s foreign ministry said the talks were only “progressing positively” and that an announcement was forthcoming on the exact time guns will fall silent.

Qatar is negotiating along with the U.S. and Egypt to secure the truce.

Spokesperson Majed al-Ansari said all sides are working “to ensure the rapid start of the truce and to provide what is necessary to ensure the parties’ commitment to the agreement.”

An Israeli official anonymously told journalists that the unexpected delay was due to a condition that was previously unknown in Jerusalem. They explained that both the Israeli government and Hamas had to sign the ceasefire document for it to be active.

Israeli families are understandably worried after seeing their loved ones held by Hamas for nearly 50 days.

Part of the agreement is to allow humanitarian aid to pour into Gaza. It would be the first relief since Hamas sparked hostilities almost seven weeks ago.

Terrorists poured across the border of southern Israel on Oct. 7 and murdered over 1,200 Israelis. Some 240 hostages were seized by Palestinian forces, and almost immediately Tel Aviv began bombarding Gaza in retaliation.