The Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) announced the death of 76-year-old Katzir Hanna, who had been held hostage since October 7 during the Hamas surprise attack in Southern Israel.
Hanna, a mother of three and grandmother of six, was kidnapped from the town of Nir Oz, and her husband was killed by Hamas on the spot during the Oct. 7 attack on Israel.
The PIJ had previously suggested the possibility of releasing Hanna on humanitarian grounds due to her critical need for daily life-saving medication. However, this promise was not fulfilled, and her death was attributed to what the PIJ called the "procrastination" of Israel, as stated in a post on X by OSINTdefender.
The armed wing of Islamic Jihad, the al-Quds Brigades, confirmed the news on its Telegram channel, stating, "We previously expressed our willingness to release her on humanitarian grounds, but the enemy was obstructing, and this led to her death," reported Newpost.
Israel's stance on exchanging Palestinian prisoners for non-Israeli hostages was clarified by a senior Israeli official who revealed details of a tentative agreement with Hamas, according to NBC News. The proposed deal, awaiting a government vote, would involve the exchange of around 50 women and children for approximately 150 Palestinian prisoners held by Israel in the first phase.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called special Cabinet meetings amid reports of a potential pause in hostilities with Hamas, the Times of Israel reported.
Meanwhile, heavy fighting erupted around the Indonesian Hospital in northern Gaza as Israel expanded its ground assault on the Palestinian enclave, encircling the nearby Jabalia refugee camp.
The conflict's toll on journalists has been severe, with at least 50 journalists, 45 of them Palestinian, reported killed since the war began. The Committee to Protect Journalists declared the first four weeks of the conflict as the deadliest for journalists since 1992.
The humanitarian crisis in Gaza is worsening, with over 1.6 million people displaced, more than 13,000 reported dead, and urgent food aid needed for almost all of Gaza's population of over 2 million, according to the United Nations' World Food Programme's post on X.
The Israel Defense Forces estimated 1,200 deaths in the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel, with 236 people still held hostage in Gaza. However, this number has been revised downward to reflect those found dead, according to NBC News.
Jim Thomas is a writer based in Indiana. He holds a bachelor's degree in Political Science, a law degree from U.I.C. Law School, and has practiced law for more than 20 years.
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