Israel’s minister for diaspora affairs and combating antisemitism, Amichai Chikli, who is part of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud Party, has reacted to the news of a hostage release deal and temporary ceasefire.
Speaking to BBC’s Newshour, Chikli said the deal followed a long night of government meetings and a vote.
He voted in favour of the agreement, but said: “It needs to be understood that this is just a pause. We are not about to finish the war against Hamas.”
When asked if Israel might consider extending the truce in exchange for more hostages, he said Israel did not have trust in Hamas keeping their side of the deal. He added that it was complicated to navigate the balance between bringing hostages home and destroying Hamas.
Chikli said he did not know the reason the truce was delayed, which was believed to begin on Thursday morning. He said it could be possible that it is delayed again and attributed this to Hamas’s unreliability.
“We hope that we can see our 13 men and women and children tomorrow. We hope, but until its happened we need to be sceptical,” he said.
Hamas health ministry says strike on UN school killed 27
The Hamas-run health ministry says 27 people have been killed in a strike on a UN school in the Jabalia refugee camp in Gaza’s north.
The BBC has not been able to verify this but we will bring you details when we get them.
It’s not the first time the school has been targeted – it was also struck on 2 November.
At least 20 people were reportedly killed in that attack, UNRWA said at the time