Israeli defense minister says Hamas playing ‘psychological games’ over Gaza hostages

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Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant accused Hamas on Sunday of playing “psychological games” over hostages after it offered to free all captives in exchange for Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails.

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“The stories published by Hamas are part of their psychological games ... Hamas is cynically using those who are dear to us -- they understand the pain and the pressure,” Gallant told relatives of some 300 hostages held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip, a statement released by his office said.

On Saturday, Hamas’ leader in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, said the Palestinian militant group was ready for an “immediate” prisoner swap with Israel.

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