Australia news LIVE: Sharma returns to parliament after Liberals preselection; Final day of scheduled Israel-Hamas ceasefire

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  • Fourth and final hostage-prisoner exchange scheduled in Gaza today
  • This morning’s headlines at a glance
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Fourth and final hostage-prisoner exchange scheduled in Gaza today

The latest on the Israel-Hamas war is that the fragile ceasefire between the two is back on track.

Overnight the militants freed 17 more hostages, including 14 Israelis and the first American, in a third set of releases under a four-day truce that the United States said it hoped would be extended.

Palestinians in the Gaza Strip flee south on the third day of a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.Credit: AP

Some hostages were handed over directly to Israel, while others left through Egypt. Israel’s army said one was airlifted directly to a hospital.

The hostages ranged in age from four to 84 and included Abigail Edan, a four-year-old girl whose parents were killed in the Hamas attack that started the war on October 7.

Israel’s prison service later said it had begun the process of releasing 39 Palestinian prisoners.

A fourth exchange is expected today (Gaza time) – the last day of the ceasefire during which a total of 50 hostages and 150 Palestinian prisoners are to be freed. All are women and children.

The third release followed a second prisoner-hostage exchange on Saturday night that risked being derailed when Hamas’ armed wing claimed that Israel had failed to meet all truce conditions, including committing to letting aid trucks into northern Gaza.

We’ll keep you updated on significant developments today. In the meantime, read our full report on the latest in the ceasefire.

This morning’s headlines at a glance

Good morning, and thanks for joining us today.

It’s Friday, November 24. I’m Michael Fowler, and I’ll be anchoring our live coverage for the first half of the day

Here’s what you need to know before we get started:

  • Former Wentworth MP Dave Sharma will re-enter parliament following a shock preselection victory, while a small business owner and former preacher won preselection in Victoria over former party president Greg Mirabella.
  • The federal government is being asked to subsidise builders who bring skilled foreign workers into the country in a bid to cut the cost of new homes.
  • Apple’s $49 consumer tracking gadget, AirTag, is being used by international drug smugglers to circumvent Australian customs and police operations at ports
  • India’s batsmen took advantage of some ragged Australian bowling to score 4-235 and secure victory in the second of five T20 matches between the two countries.
  • In NSW, investigators are circling the senior ranks of public transport agency Sydney Metro following allegations of bullying, conflicts of interest, corruption and fraud.
  • In Victoria, the state government is underwriting an expansion in the number of GPs being trained to prescribe hormones to transgender people from the age of 16.
  • And in overseas news, the Scottish health secretary’s claim he was unaware his sons ran up an $21,000 roaming charge bill on holiday by watching football has been ridiculed.
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