Hamas says planned to release 2 more captives, but Israel declined offer

Gaza-based Palestinian group Hamas says that it planned to release two more hostages on humanitarian grounds, but the Israeli side declined the offer.

“Last night we notified the Qatari brothers that we will release Nurit Ishak and Yohevid Efshitz on humanitarian grounds, without any conditions. However, the occupation government rejected this proposal,” the group announced in a statement.

Hamas has announced that the number of Israelis who have been captured during Operation al-Aqsa Storm, which started on October 7, is around 250.

On Friday evening, the Israeli government confirmed the release of two US citizens from captivity in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas has also stressed Israel’s refusal to accept two captives shows it’s not serious about “stopping the bloodshed” in Gaza.

“Due to severe humanitarian conditions, we decided to hand them over to their families, through our brothers in Qatar. That’s what we informed them last night. [We didn’t want] anything in return,” said Hamas spokesman Khaled al-Qaddoumi.

“Unfortunately, the government of Israel refused to take them and this is proof that this occupation government is not serious, and is not ready to stop the bloodshed,” he added.

The Palestinian resistance groups’ Operation al-Aqsa Storm also resulted in the death of at least 1,400 Israeli forces and illegal settlers and injured more than 4,800 others.

The Israeli regime has responded by bringing Gaza under a relentless campaign of bloodshed and destruction that has so far claimed the lives of at least 4,300 people, mostly civilians.

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