According to a report in the Washington Post, Israel and Hamas are said to be close to a possible agreement on a ceasefire. In an agreement negotiated with US mediation, the two warring parties are considering a five-day ceasefire during which dozens of Israeli hostages held by the Islamist terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip could be released.
The newspaper reported this that night, citing people familiar with the regulations. In response to the post, US National Security Council spokeswoman Adrienne Watson wrote on Platform X: "We have not reached an agreement yet, but we continue to work hard on it."
According to the Washington Post, the release of the hostages could begin in the next few days, provided there are no last-minute problems. The cessation of hostilities should also enable significantly more humanitarian aid, including fuel, to reach the Gaza Strip from Egypt. The draft agreement was drawn up in weeks of talks in the Qatari capital Doha between Israel, the USA and Hamas.
After the Hamas massacre in Israel on October 7th with 1,200 deaths, around 240 hostages were kidnapped to the Gaza Strip - most of them were kidnapped by Hamas. Israel then began massive air strikes and a ground offensive in the Gaza Strip at the end of October. According to Palestinian information, more than 11,500 people have been killed so far. According to the UN, the supply situation is catastrophic. Israel is under international pressure over its conduct of the war.
WHO: Saving patients in Shifa clinic
The World Health Organization (WHO) is now working hard on a plan to rescue the remaining patients from the Shifa Hospital in the Gaza Strip. This is what WHO boss Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus wrote on X. Employees visited the hospital on Saturday and found a desolate situation. There is no water, no electricity or food there and hardly any medical needs left.
The team found a mass grave at the entrance to the hospital and was informed that more than 80 people were buried there, the WHO wrote in a statement on Saturday.
"Given this deplorable situation and the condition of many patients, including babies, staff requested assistance in evacuating terminally ill patients who could no longer be cared for," the WHO chief said. They are working on it with partners and are demanding support for this plan. Tedros did not mention Israel, whose military took over the hospital, or Hamas, which rules the Gaza Strip, by name. “The current situation is intolerable and unjustifiable,” he wrote. "Cease fire. NOW," he added.
Biden for two-state solution
US President Joe Biden has once again spoken out in favor of the so-called two-state solution in the Middle East conflict and outlined how he imagines the time after the end of the Gaza war. In an opinion piece published in the Washington Post on Saturday, he also brought up sanctions against extremist settlers in the West Bank. The Democrat once again criticized “the extremist violence against Palestinians in the West Bank.”
In the long article, Biden recorded what he believes the future in the region should look like - and how the path there should be shaped. “This much is clear: a two-state solution is the only way to ensure the long-term security of both the Israeli and Palestinian people,” Biden wrote. "While it may seem at the moment that this future has never been further away, the crisis has made it more urgent than ever."
Abbas calls for an end to the Gaza war
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called for an immediate end to the war in the Gaza Strip on Saturday evening. In a televised address, Abbas called on US President Biden to "intervene and stop this aggression immediately." He asked: "What is the United States waiting for in light of the ongoing genocide against our people in Gaza?" Abbas also called on Biden to push for more humanitarian aid to be brought into the blocked coastal strip.
Demonstration in Tel Aviv
Several hundred people demonstrated against the Gaza war in Tel Aviv on Saturday evening. The demonstration on the beach promenade took place at the initiative of the left-wing Chadash party, as Israeli media reported. Jewish and Arab Israelis protested together against a continuation of the military operation in the Gaza Strip.
“An eye for an eye and we are all blind,” read one of the signs. The Kan TV station reported that the demonstrators had called for "the worst government in Israel's history" to be replaced.
The news site "ynet" reported that there was a counter-demonstration with several dozen participants. There were verbal and physical confrontations between the two sides. The demonstrators against the war were pelted with water bottles. Participants in the counter-demonstration shouted “Go to Gaza” and “Death to the Arabs.”
What is important today
The situation in Shifa Hospital in the Gaza Strip remains tense. The WHO is expected to move forward with its plans to save the remaining patients. It is also eagerly awaited whether and when the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, promoted by the USA, will actually come about.