November 24, 2023 Israel-Hamas war

By Tara Subramaniam, Christian Edwards, Thom Poole, Aditi Sangal, Tori B. Powell, Adrienne Vogt, Elise Hammond and Jessie Yeung, CNN

Updated 12:25 a.m. ET, November 25, 2023
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2:23 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Israeli military says it destroyed tunnels near Al-Shifa area ahead of agreed truce

From CNN's Amir Tal in Jerusalem

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said Friday that it destroyed a number of tunnels in the Al-Shifa Hospital area in Gaza City and completed "operational preparations" ahead of the agreed truce.

The Israeli military destroyed "a route of underground tunnels and a number of tunnel shafts in the area of the Shifa Hospital," according to the IDF statement.

"The IDF has completed its operational preparations according to the combat lines of the pause."

The statement added that Israeli troops had continued to strike targets "over the last day and night" ahead of the truce, without specifying the number of attacks. 

2:18 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Thailand welcomes Israel-Hamas truce, hopes its own citizens will be released soon

From CNN's Kocha Olarn in Bangkok

Thailand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs says it welcomes the truce agreement between Israel and Hamas but hopes its own citizens held by militants in Gaza can return home soon.

"Thailand fervently hopes that this momentum can be maintained so that the remaining hostages, which include Thai nationals, are released at the earliest opportunity. Thailand reiterates our strong call toward that end," the ministry said in a statement Friday.

Militants are holding more than 200 people captive inside Gaza from mass abductions that were part of Hamas' October 7 attacks on Israel, according to figures from the Israeli military.

Under terms previously announced by mediators in Qatar, a total of 50 of those hostages, women and children, are expected to be freed over a four-day humanitarian pause in fighting beginning Friday.

Among many of the foreign nationals kidnapped and being held hostage in Gaza are migrant laborers from Asian countries such as Thailand, Nepal and the Philippines – many of whom were working in Israel’s southern district near the Gaza Strip, and unprotected, when Hamas launched its surprise terror attack.

At least 39 Thais have been killed in the conflict with 26 held as hostages, according to figures released by the Thai government.

2:13 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Israeli military tells people in southern Gaza not to move north

From CNN's Eyad Kourdi and Alex Stambaugh  

A displaced Palestinian man, who fled his house for safety, carries his belongings as he makes his way back to his home, during the  temporary truce. in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza, on Friday, Novemeber 24.
A displaced Palestinian man, who fled his house for safety, carries his belongings as he makes his way back to his home, during the temporary truce. in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza, on Friday, Novemeber 24. Saleh Salem/Reuters

The Israeli military has told people in southern Gaza not to move north, with its forces restricting travel from the north to the south to only one road.

"It is only possible to move from the north of the Strip to its south via Salah Eddine Road. The movement of the residents from the south of the Strip to the north will not be allowed in any way," Israel Defense Forces Arabic spokesperson Avichay Adraee wrote on social media platform X.

Flyers were also allegedly dropped by the Israeli military over parts of the Gaza Strip with the notice, according to video shared from the city of Khan Younis and people on social media sharing photos of the flyers. 

1:37 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

130,000 liters of diesel fuel to enter Gaza from Egypt daily, Egyptian official says

From CNN’s Eleni Giokos in Cairo

A truck of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) carrying fuel arrives at the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing with the Gaza Strip on November 22. 
A truck of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) carrying fuel arrives at the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing with the Gaza Strip on November 22.  Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images  

Some 130,000 liters of diesel fuel and four trucks of gas will enter Gaza from Egypt daily starting Friday, according to an Egyptian official.

“Two hundred trucks, loaded with food, medicine and water, will enter daily for the first time since the start of the Israeli war on the strip,” Diaa Rashwan, the chairman of Egypt’s State Information Service, said in a statement on Friday. 

Rashwan said that Egypt would continue to receive groups of injured people from Gaza for treatment and facilitate the evacuation of foreigners and dual nationals who had been stuck in the territory. 

He also said that for the first time since the start of the conflict, Egypt would allow in Palestinians who wished to enter Gaza through the Rafah border crossing.

4:28 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Truce between Israel and Hamas appears to be taking effect, CNN team in Sderot says

From CNN’s Jeremy Diamond and John Heron in Sderot, Israel 

A convoy of Israeli military tanks and Armoured Personnel Carriers (APC) enter Israel on November 24.
A convoy of Israeli military tanks and Armoured Personnel Carriers (APC) enter Israel on November 24. Amir Cohen/Reuters

A truce between Israel and Hamas appears to be taking effect, despite what sounded like sporadic Israeli artillery fire and sirens warning of rockets from Gaza in the minutes after it was due to begin. 

CNN journalists in the southern Israel city of Sderot said the sounds of heavy weapons fire stopped around 7:18 a.m. local time (12:18 a.m. ET). 

They heard what sounded like small arms fire inside Gaza about 20 minutes later, but artillery fire, airstrikes and rockets appear to have stopped. 

1:13 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Cousin of hostage says they hope first deal will lead to more releases

From CNN’s Teele Rebane

Maya Roman-Gat speaks during an interview with CNN.
Maya Roman-Gat speaks during an interview with CNN. CNN

Maya Roman-Gat, whose cousin Yarden Roman has been held by Hamas since the October 7 attacks, told CNN that she hopes the first hostage deal will lead to more of them being released.

Roman-Gat said the family was notified on Thursday that Yarden would not be among the first group released, but may be part of a later group.

“I think it’s good that the government is updating the families whose relatives won’t be released because we of course have been waiting to hear,” she said.
“It’s very hard every day to you know try and not hope too much...So it was really hard today and we expect it to be a hard week."

To their family “any deal is important because we believe that one deal can lead to another," Roman-Gat said.

“We hope that the beginning of getting people back will also lead to her coming back to us as quickly as possible,” she told CNN.
12:47 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Northern Gaza remains a "dangerous war zone," Israeli military says

From CNN's Eyad Kourdi 

Palestinians walk through the rubble of a destroyed building following an Israeli strike in Deir Al Balah, Gaza on November 23.
Palestinians walk through the rubble of a destroyed building following an Israeli strike in Deir Al Balah, Gaza on November 23. Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto/Getty Images

Shortly before the anticipated truce was due to come into effect, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) reaffirmed on Friday that the "war is not over yet" and that northern Gaza remains a "dangerous war zone."  

"The war is not over yet. The cessation of hostilities for humanitarian purposes is temporary," IDF Arabic spokesperson Avichay Adraee said in a video posted on X Friday.
"The northern Gaza Strip area is a dangerous war zone and it is forbidden to move toward it."

The spokesperson urged people in Gaza to remain in the south of the strip.

12:36 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

Sirens warning of potential incoming rockets sound in Israeli communities near Gaza, Israeli military says

From CNN's Richard Allen Greene

Sirens warning of potential incoming rockets sounded in Israeli communities near Gaza about 15 minutes after the expected start time of a truce between Israel and Hamas, the Israel Defense Forces said Friday. 

It was not immediately clear if there were any impacts or interceptions. 

A four-day truce between Israel and Hamas is due to take effect Friday at 7 a.m. local time (midnight ET), after Qatar helped broker a deal to free hostages held in Gaza since October 7.

1:20 a.m. ET, November 24, 2023

CNN continues to hear "loud booms" consistent with artillery minutes after expected truce 

From CNN's Jeremy Diamond and Matthias Somm in Sderot, Israel 

Smoke seen from Israel, rises following an Israeli airstrike in the Gaza, on Friday, November 24.
Smoke seen from Israel, rises following an Israeli airstrike in the Gaza, on Friday, November 24. Leo Correa/AP

A CNN team in the southern Israel city of Sderot says they have continued to hear "loud booms" that sound like Israeli artillery fire landing in Gaza, up to 15 minutes after the expected start time of a truce between Israel and Hamas.

The sounds of activity are winding down but have not entirely subsided, according to CNN's Jeremy Diamond and Matthias Somm.

The sounds appear consistent with outgoing artillery.

At the same time, smoke continues to rise from the direction of Gaza — as it has in the hour leading up to the expected truce. The cause of the smoke is unknown.