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Statement by the Prime Minister on agreement to return hostages and implement an extended humanitarian pause

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The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on the agreement to secure the return of hostages taken by Hamas and observe an extended humanitarian pause in Gaza:

“The agreement on the release of hostages and an extended humanitarian pause in Gaza is progress. Thousands of families were devastated by the terrorist attacks on October 7, and this will allow many families to be reunited with their loved ones. I thank Canada’s partners in the international community, including the United States, Qatar, and Egypt, for their efforts in helping negotiate this agreement. We look forward to its full implementation, and we call on all parties to respect its terms. We also continue to call for the immediate release of all hostages.

“Rapid, sustained, and unimpeded access to humanitarian relief remains critical. Much more is needed to address the dire humanitarian situation and urgent needs of innocent Palestinian civilians in Gaza. Civilians must be able to get the life-saving assistance they need, including food, water, fuel, and emergency medical supplies, quickly. Canada has already committed $60 million in funding to trusted partners for humanitarian relief, and we stand ready to provide additional support.

“Canada will continue to work with regional partners to make sure Canadians, permanent residents, and their eligible family members in Gaza can leave. We urge all parties to facilitate the exit of Canadians and other foreign nationals from Gaza.

“We must do everything possible to avoid the further loss of innocent civilian life and move toward long-lasting peace in the region. Canada mourns the loss of Israeli and Palestinian lives following the October 7 attacks, and we will continue to stand firmly with the Israeli and Palestinian peoples in their right to live in peace, security, and dignity, without fear. We will continue to support a two-state solution where a peaceful, prosperous, and safe Palestinian state thrives alongside a peaceful, prosperous, and safe state of Israel.”