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Daily Briefing April 21: Day 198 – Split screen as US approves aid, mulls IDF sanction

Political correspondent Tal Schneider discusses Hamas and Turkey, possible US sanction of IDF unit, as settlements reporter Jeremy Sharon examines Smotrich’s illegal outpost plan

Welcome to The Times of Israel’s Daily Briefing, your 20-minute audio update on what’s happening in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world.

It is day 198 of the war with Hamas. Political correspondent Tal Schneider and legal and settlements reporter Jeremy Sharon join host Jessica Steinberg for today’s episode.

Schneider discusses the current nature of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh’s relationship with Turkey as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hosted Haniyeh over the weekend and as Qatar discusses the possibility of expelling the Hamas leadership from Doha.

She also looks at the latest in the US-Israel relationship, as the Biden administration considers sanctioning an IDF battalion known as Netzah Yehuda, which includes soldiers from more extremist backgrounds, known for alleged human rights abuse against Palestinians.

Schneider considers this possible step by the US against the backdrop of the approved $17 billion US military aid package, and as the US continues to look carefully at how the IDF is handling some of its actions in Gaza.

Sharon talks about the effort by Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich to start the process of legalizing 68 illegal outposts, as part of his coalition agreement with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Steinberg speaks about preparations for Passover among the hostage families, including a Seder for 500 members of Kibbutz Be’eri at Tel Aviv’s Hostages Square, and other efforts to mark this complicated season and holiday.

For the latest updates, please see The Times of Israel’s ongoing live blog.

Discussed articles include:

Hamas leaders said looking at leaving Qatar amid growing pressure in hostage talks

To punish Israel for Gaza war, Turkey’s citizens will gladly suffer the economic cost

House okays $17 billion in military aid for Israel under major spending package

Israel aghast as US said poised to sanction IDF unit with history of abuses

Smotrich said pushing to start legalization process for 68 illegal West Bank outposts

Passover celebrants urged to set a seat for a hostage, use a Haggadah of hope

THOSE WE HAVE LOST: Civilians and soldiers killed in Hamas’s onslaught on Israel

THOSE WE ARE MISSING: The hostages and victims whose fate is still unknown

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