Israel has agreed to daily, four-hour humanitarian pauses in the fighting in northern Gaza, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby confirmed Thursday morning, Nov. 9.
Kirby announced to reporters that the four-hour humanitarian pauses will be implemented in northern Gaza beginning Thursday.
The Israelis have informed the U.S. there will be no military operations in those areas for the duration of the pauses, and the timing will be announced three hours before the pause begins each day, Kirby said.
An Israeli official also confirmed the four-hour daily pauses, saying the reprieves are meant to allow people to move to the south of Gaza and obtain food and medicine.
“The fighting continues and there will be no ceasefire without the release of our hostages,” the Israeli prime minister’s office said in a statement. “Israel is allowing safe passage through humanitarian corridors from the northern Gaza Strip to the south, which 50,000 Gazans utilized just yesterday. We once again call on the civilian population of Gaza to evacuate to the south.”
Kirby called the steps Israel is taking “good steps in the right direction” for complying with international law and ensuring the safety of civilians. Kirby warned that Hamas may try to discourage or prevent civilians from leaving.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had said he might be open to “little pauses” in the fighting for humanitarian reasons, but as his office indicated, he has dismissed the idea of a ceasefire.
Israel has been fighting Hamas in the Gaza Strip since Hamas launched a surprise assault on Israel on Oct. 7.