UNITED NATIONS, November 29. /TASS/. The humanitarian pause in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict zone is not a solution, and the United Nations continues to insist on a ceasefire and immediate release of all hostages, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said.
"The truce was a step in the right direction, it was a symbol of hope, but it doesn't solve the key problems we face. That is why we have been insisting on the need of a humanitarian ceasefire, leading to the unconditional and immediate release of all hostages and to the possibility to have effective humanitarian aid to all people in Gaza wherever they live," the UN chief said at a joint conference with Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission.
Hamas announced on November 22 that an agreement on a four-day humanitarian ceasefire in the Gaza Strip had been reached through the mediation of Qatar and Egypt. The agreement stipulates the release of 50 women and children under the age of 19 who are held in Gaza in exchange for the release of 150 women and children under the age of 19 from Israeli prisons. The ceasefire came into force in the Gaza Strip at 8:00 a.m. local time (6:00 a.m. GMT) on November 24 and the first group of hostages was released on the same day. Israel and Hamas, via mediators, reached an agreement on the extension of the ceasefire in Gaza from 7:00 a.m. local time (5:00 a.m. GMT) on November 28 for two more days.