Israel Says Probing Reports Youngest Hostage, 10-Month-Old, Family Killed

Negotiations between Israel and Hamas to extend the Gaza truce encountered a last-minute hurdle on Wednesday, triggered by an unconfirmed claim from Hamas. The assertion, stating that a family of Israeli hostages, including a 10-month-old baby named Kfir Bibas, was killed in a previous Israeli bombing, adds complexity to the ongoing discussions. Israeli officials are presently scrutinizing the Hamas statement, recognizing it as a highly emotional issue in Israel, particularly since this family is among the most prominent civilian hostages yet to be freed. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) stressed that it holds Hamas accountable for the safety of all hostages in Gaza. The potential extension of the ceasefire, scheduled to end Thursday morning, hinges on a commitment to release all women and children among the hostages. Negotiators are exploring various options, with the prospect of a two-day extension. The truce, initiated to address the conflict stemming from a raid by gunmen on Israel, has witnessed releases on both sides, but persistent challenges are impacting the delicate peace in the region.

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