Slight delay in expected release of today’s group of Israeli hostages

There is a slight delay in the release of the second group of Israeli hostages who were kidnapped to the Gaza Strip on October 7. The process should have begun at 4 p.m.

An unnamed Israeli source quoted in some Hebrew media calls the delay “technical.”

There has been some back-and-forth negotiation over whether 13 or 14 Israelis will be released today, although it is unclear if that is a factor in the delay.

While Israel has said it is expecting 13 hostages, the Israel Prison Service has made preparations for the release of 42 Palestinian prisoners — under the terms of the agreement for a lull in fighting, three prisoners are released for every Israeli hostage.

Channel 12 says the process of the release could begin at 5 p.m. — and notes that yesterday’s release of 13 hostages was also drawn out.

“This is manipulation by [Hamas’s Gaza leader] Yahya Sinwar,” says former hostage negotiator Yaron Blum.

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