French President Emmanuel arrived in Tel Aviv today to demonstrate solidarity with Israel and advocate for the release of the hostages who have been held captive in Gaza since the Hamas attack. In addition, Macron is expected to call for the resumption of a “genuine peace process” in the region.
In a significant development, two elderly hostages who were held by Hamas have been released and airlifted to an Israeli hospital, where they will be reunited with their families. With their release, the total number of hostages freed by Hamas has reached four. It is important to note that no Palestinian prisoners were released in exchange for their freedom.
However, the situation continues to escalate, with overnight Israeli air strikes across Gaza reportedly resulting in the death of 140 people. This has pushed the death toll in Gaza up to a staggering 5,087, according to the Gaza health ministry, which is controlled by Hamas.
The Israeli military has reported that the number of people taken hostage by Hamas on October 7 has risen to 222. The official number of people killed in the initial attack remains at 1,400.
Amid the ongoing conflict, Hamas has released two female captives for humanitarian reasons, as stated by the group’s spokesman. However, it is unclear whether this gesture will lead to further releases or negotiations.
In response to the situation, Israel has intensified its attacks on the Gaza Strip and also targeted areas in the occupied West Bank, Syria, and Lebanon. These actions have sparked clashes with Lebanon’s Hezbollah militant group. The conflict’s impact has been devastating, with the Palestinian health ministry reporting that the death toll in Gaza has now surpassed 5,000 in just two weeks of Israeli air strikes.
As tensions continue to rise and casualties mount, it remains to be seen whether Macron’s visit and calls for peace will yield any tangible results in resolving the crisis in the region.