Latest on Israel-Hamas war, hostage deal, pause in Gaza fighting: Live updates


Fighting in the Gaza Strip showed no letup Thursday, as a highly anticipated hostage and prisoner exchange was delayed. The Israel Defense Forces said ground troops had “continued striking” in Gaza, with airstrikes on more than 300 targets over the past day. Israel’s National Security Council director said in a statement overnight that the release of Palestinian prisoners in Israel and hostages held by Hamas in Gaza would not start earlier than Friday. A four-day “pause” in fighting, part of the agreement along with the swap, is also unlikely to begin before Friday, an Israeli official told The Washington Post, although a more specific timetable could be announced beforehand. The deal is set to allow the release of 50 women and children held hostage in Gaza for 150 Palestinian women and teenagers held in Israeli prisons, and for more humanitarian relief to enter the enclave. Gazans told The Washington Post they were “happy” for a pause in the conflict “even if this stop is temporary.”

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