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Israel approves hostage deal with Hamas: Live updates

2:20 PM ET, November 22, 2023

A source familiar with the matter says the United States has a “working list” of hostages that Hamas will likely release on Thursday

By CNN’s MJ Lee, Jennifer Hansler and Sam Fossum

Families and friends of about 240 hostages held by Hamas in Gaza demand that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu return them to their homeland during a demonstration in Tel Aviv, Israel, on November 21.

Ariel Shalit / AP

Just hours before the first group of hostages were to be released from Gaza, US officials did so Action list of 10 hostages An informed source says they believe they will likely be released on day one. It was not clear whether any of the three hostages – including a 3-year-old child – were Americans Abigail drink – He will be released on the first day.

The deal was structured so that each day a group of hostages to be released would be handed over to the Red Cross. The Red Cross will then take the group to a specific border point, which will largely depend on the location of these hostages, the informed source said.

They added that many of the first 50 hostages were expected to exit through Egypt.

The source said that the first two days of the hostages’ release will be treated as a “test period” to ensure the success of the operation. By the third day, there are expected to be intense discussions about a possible second phase of hostage release after the initial group of 50 hostages.

White House official Brett McGurk told CNN on Wednesday that he could not speak to the timeline for when the Americans would be released. He confirmed that three American hostages – Aidan and two women – are expected to return to their homeland as part of 50 hostages released by Hamas. A total of 10 Americans are believed to be hostages.

“I was asked earlier do we know if the 50 are alive and well. We are aware that they are alive, but they are certainly not well,” McGurk said. “These 50 women, children and young children, they cannot “Imagine what they went through, but we will make sure they get the care they need when they go home.”

McGurk said he was “optimistic” that the Red Cross would be able to reach the other hostages, but noted: “I cannot confirm or guarantee that.”

Meanwhile, McGurk said the Israeli Supreme Court “has now given the green light to proceed with the (hostage) deal,” paving the way for the process to go ahead on Thursday.

A senior Israeli official told CNN on Tuesday that there is a 24-hour period after the deal is announced to submit appeals to the court. An Israeli source familiar with the matter said that the Israeli Supreme Court rejected an appeal to stop the hostage deal from going ahead and ruled that the deal did not violate the law. Although more appeals are expected to be filed, they are also expected to be rejected, the source told CNN.

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