Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Israel-Palestine conflict LIVE: Gaza death toll hits 3,000

Palestinian group, Hamas, which runs the Gaza Strip, has announced the start of military the operation Al-Aqsa Flood against Israel. Thousands of rockets have been fired from the blockaded enclave towards the occupied territories as far away as Tel Aviv, killing over 1,400 Israelis, including both military and settlers. More than 3,000 Palestinians have been so far killed in an exchange of fire between the two sides.

At least 3,000 killed in Gaza Strip: Palestinian health ministry

At least 3,000 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip since last Saturday, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza.

An additional 12,500 people have been injured, the ministry added.

German Chancellor arrives in Israel

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has landed in Tel Aviv on Tuesday, according to Israeli foreign ministry.

Scholz was received by Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen on the tarmac, a photo released by the ministry shows.

Israeli airstrikes hit 2 refugee camps in Gaza: Palestinian interior ministry

Israeli airstrikes hit two densely populated refugee camps in central Gaza on Tuesday, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Interior, resulting in casualties.

Al-Bureij refugee camp: At least 12 people were killed and dozens were injured as a result of an airstrike that hit a residential building in the camp in central Gaza, according to a doctor at the Al-Aqsa Hospital.

A high-level Hamas commander, Ayman Nofal “Abu Ahmed,” was also killed in the strike on the Bureij refugee camp, according to a statement from Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing.

Al-Maghazi refugee camp: Israeli shelling also hit a school in the camp located in central Gaza that was housing displaced people, the Palestinian Ministry of Interior announced on Tuesday. At least six people were killed, according to the Al-Aqsa Hospital.

Hospital in Gaza out of service due to Israeli airstrikes: Palestinian Ministry of Health

A hospital in Gaza went out of service Tuesday after sustaining severe damage following Israeli airstrikes targeting the hospital’s neighboring buildings, according to a statement by Dr. Ashraf al-Qidra, the spokesperson for the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza.

“Severe damage to Al Karama Hospital in Gaza led it to be put out of service as a result of the Israeli occupation forces airstrikes targeting neighboring buildings and their (the buildings) falling towards it,” according to the statement.

The ministry has issued a plea to all gas station owners and anyone in possession of diesel fuel to contact them to secure fuel for critical medical services, the statement added.

Fuel reserves at all Gaza hospitals are on the brink, with only about a day’s supply left, a United Nations relief agency announced earlier Tuesday. The failure of backup generators would endanger thousands of patients’ lives, it added.

Save the Children calls for ceasefire as casualties soar in Gaza

Save the Children called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza as the death toll amongst children in the besieged region exceeds 1,000 dead.

Palestinian officials say Israel has killed 2,800 Palestinians in the strip since it began its bombardment.

“With the UN Security Council expected to reconvene today, a ceasefire must be agreed to save children’s lives,” said Save the Children’s Palestine director Jason Lee.

“Without an end to fighting – without a ceasefire – thousands of children’s lives hang in the balance,” he added.

Food stocks in Gaza shops will last “less than a week”: UN

Shops in Gaza will run out of available food stocks in “less than a week,” with retailers unable to restock from wholesalers due to “widespread destruction and insecurity,” a spokesperson for the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) told CNN Tuesday.

Bread supplies are running short, with only one of the five flour mills in the Gaza Strip functioning due to a lack of fuel and electricity, the spokesperson warned.

Meanwhile, people are “lining up for hours to get bread” from bakeries, and only five of the 23 bakeries contracted by the WFP to provide fresh bread to shelters are operational.

In warehouses, commercial supplies of essential food commodities are “sufficient for approximately two weeks,” but due to damaged infrastructure, it is difficult to distribute, the spokesperson for the UN agency added.

With warehouses located in Gaza City, the WFP is struggling to channel food to the southern region where displaced people are moving.

UN warns Israel against ‘forcible transfer of Palestinians’ in Gaza

The United Nations warned Israel that it could be breaking international law if there is a “forcible” transfer of Palestinians from the Gaza Strip.

On Tuesday, the UN Human Rights Office said Israel had made no attempt to fulfil its obligations under international law after it told Palestinians in northern Gaza to leave their homes in preparation for a ground assault into the besieged territory.

“We have grave fears about the toll on civilians in the coming days. Military operations show no signs of abating,” UN rights office spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani told a media briefing.

“International law requires that any lawful temporary evacuation by Israel, as the occupying power, of an area on the basis of the security of the population or imperative military reasons must be accompanied by the provision of proper accommodation for all evacuees, undertaken under satisfactory conditions of hygiene, health, safety and nutrition.”

At least 4 killed in Lebanon by Israeli strikes

At least four people were killed in Israeli strikes in the Alma al-Shaab area of Southern Lebanon on Tuesday, according to the Lebanese Red Cross.

Hezbollah announced two of its fighters were killed in confrontations Tuesday, but it’s unclear whether they are part of the death toll reported by the Red Cross.

News of the deaths come amid clashes along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon.

Number of French citizens killed rises to 21

At least 21 French citizens have been killed following the Hamas attacks on Israel on October 7, the French Foreign Ministry said in a news release Tuesday.

Eleven others are still missing, the ministry added.

French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna met with the families of those still missing in Tel Aviv on Sunday.

Israeli army intelligence chief: ‘We failed’ on 7 October

The head of Israel’s Military Intelligence Directorate has taken responsbility for the failure of his forces to stop the attacks by Palestinian fighters in southern Israel on 7 October.

Aharon Haliva, a major general in the Israeli army, said an intelligence failure led to the start of the ongoing war, according to comments reported by the Times of Israel.

“The Military Intelligence Directorate, under my command, failed to warn of the terror attack carried out by Hamas,” Haliva said.

“We failed in our most important mission, and as the head of the Military Intelligence Directorate, I bear full responsibility for the failure.”

It’s estimated that 1,400 Israelis were killed in the attacks on 7 October , including 286 soldiers and dozens of police officers.

Israel added a further 199 have been taken hostage in Gaza but Palestinian groups say the number of captives they hold is more than 200.

Palestinian PM demands end to Israel’s “aggression” against people in Gaza

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh on Tuesday demanded an end to Israel’s “aggression” against people in Gaza, according to a statement by his office, as he called for humanitarian aid for the besieged territory.

“Our priority now is to halt the occupation’s aggression against our people in the Gaza Strip, and to ensure the delivery of medical, health, and food supplies, as well as the restoration of electricity and water services,” Shtayyeh said during a meeting in the West Bank city of Ramallah with Norway’s special representative to the Middle East, Hilde Haraldstad, per the statement.

“We must also operate water treatment and desalination plants to address the humanitarian and health crisis facing the region,” the prime minister stated.

The World Health Organization has warned that water is running out for hundreds of thousands of displaced Palestinians.

Shtayyeh called for pressure be put on Israel to abide by international humanitarian law, the statement added.

Palestinians in Gaza urged to donate blood

The Palestinian ministry of health in Gaza has urged people in the enclave to donate blood at hospitals and blood bank branches.

Last week, the ministry announced blood supplies were running short in the enclave amid the Israeli bombardment and a deepening humanitarian crisis.

Israeli airstrikes have killed nearly 3,000 people and injured nearly 10,000, the ministry reported earlier Tuesday.

No Gaza ceasefire yet: Israeli military

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said Israel is concerned about the humanitarian situation in Gaza, but for now there is no ceasefire and the Rafah crossing into Gaza from Egypt remains closed.

IDF spokesperson Lt. Col. Richard Hecht told a briefing Tuesday that IDF bombing was “intelligence-led,” as the number of casualties in Gaza rises. Nearly 3,000 people have been killed in Israeli airstrikes since Hamas’ October 7 attack, according to Palestinian officials.

Hecht condemned the release of a video showing one of the hostages held by Hamas as “psychological warfare.”

“This is Daesh’ playbook,” he added.

Hecht accused Hamas of stealing fuel and food from the United Nations relief agency in Gaza.

WHO: 11,000 people injured in Gaza, half are women and children

A World Health Organization official has stated 11,000 people have been injured in Gaza, half of whom are women and children.

The organisation announced there have been 115 attacks on health facilities in Gaza and that they need to prepare for disease outbreak prevention.

More than 2,800 people have been killed by Israeli attacks in Gaza since October 7.

At least 61 killed in West Bank since October 7 attack: Palestinian health ministry

At least 61 people have been killed in violence in the occupied West Bank since October 7, according to a statement from the Palestinian ministry of health on Tuesday.

The toll included two recent deaths, a 17-year-old in Hebron and a 72-year-old in Nablus, “due to violence by Israeli occupation forces,” the ministry in the West Bank said.

Earlier Tuesday, the ministry of health in Gaza said at least 2,778 had been killed and a further 9,938 injured in Israeli airstrikes over the past 10 days.

16 journalists confirmed dead

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) announced at least 15 journalists have been killed since the war began on October 7, including 11 Palestinians, three Israelis and one Lebanese.

Another Palestinian journalist was killed in an Israeli air raid in the northern Gaza Strip early morning, raising the death toll to 16.

Eight journalists were reported injured and three journalists were reported missing or detained, according to New York-based CPJ.

Macron says ‘intense talks progressing’ to free captives held by Hamas

French President Emmanuel Macron stated he is following “intense talks” which “are progressing” to free captives taken by fighters of Hamas’s armed wing on October 7.

“I want to be very cautious here… so as not to endanger the intense talks we are currently conducting,” Macron told reporters in the Albanian capital Tirana.

“But they are progressing and we are following these talks hour by hour.”

German chancellor warns Hezbollah and Iran not to intervene in Israel-Hamas conflict

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has warned Hezbollah and Iran not to intervene in the Israel-Hamas conflict.

“I expressly warn Hezbollah and Iran not to intervene in this conflict,” Scholz said during a joint press conference with Jordanian King Abdullah II bin al Hussein on Tuesday in Berlin.

“Together with our allies, we as the German government are doing everything in our power to ensure that this conflict does not escalate further,” and to ensure humanitarian access to Gaza “to alleviate the suffering of the civilian population,” Scholz stated, claiming that Hamas was using the civilian population in Gaza as human shields.

“The Palestinians are not Hamas and Hamas has no right to speak for them. The Palestinian people in Gaza, they are also victims of Hamas,” Scholz added, stressing it is “important to differentiate” between Hamas and Gazan civilians.

Scholz thanked King Abdullah II for “playing a stabilizing and mediating role for so many years.”

Jordanian king warns against forced migration of Palestinians to Jordan and Egypt

King Abdullah II of Jordan warned Tuesday that the displacement of Palestinians to Jordan and Egypt is a “red line,” and stated there would be no refugees in Jordan and no refugees in Egypt.

Speaking alongside German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at a news conference in Berlin, the king warned against any forced migration.

“That is a red line, because I think that is a plan by certain of the usual suspects to try and create de facto issues on the ground. No refugees in Jordan, no refugees in Egypt. This is a situation of humanitarian dimension that has to be dealt inside of Gaza and the West Bank and not to try and push the Palestinian challenge in their future onto other people’s shoulders,” King Abdullah II said.

He expressed deep concern over the heavy toll of Palestinian and Israeli lives lost, and at the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza, which he described as “unacceptable,” both in terms of legal and humanitarian concerns.

“This year is the bloodiest for Palestinians and Israelis in recent memory, and it will get worse unless we stop this war and the humanitarian catastrophe it is causing,” the King added.

More than 1,000 children killed in Gaza since start of war

At least a thousand Palestinian children have been killed in Gaza since Israel launched its bombing campaign in the region.

Defense for Children International (DCI) said “Israeli forces have killed a Palestinian child approximately every 15 minutes since the Israelis started their aerial attacks.

“The repercussions of this war will not only affect the victims we have lost, some of which are still trapped under the rubble of their homes, and not only the residential areas that have been completely destroyed, including our own homes, but the psychological impact on us civilians and our children will be catastrophic,” stated Mohammad Abu Rukbeh, a senior Gaza field researcher at DCI’s Palestine branch.

Israel military says post-war Gaza status is a ‘global issue’

The status of the Gaza Strip after Israel’s planned ground assault on the Palestinian enclave would be a “global issue” for discussion by Israel’s politicians and with other countries, says Israel’s top military spokesperson.

“We’ve had all kinds of end games,” Daniel Hagari told media during a news briefing, in response to a question about whether Israel’s military planned to stay and govern Gaza after its ground invasion.

“The cabinet is also discussing what that could look like … this is also a global issue, what the situation will look like in this region,” he added.

Conflict in Gaza “stirs outrage among people in the region”: Iraqi prime minister tells Biden in call

Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Al-Sudani told US President Joe Biden that “continued aggression in Gaza stirs outrage among people in the region and globally,” according to a readout of a call from the prime minister’s office.

The two men stressed “the importance of containing the conflict and avoiding the expansion of war, given the far-reaching consequences it has on regional and global peace, as well as its adverse impact on civilians,” it said.

Al-Sudani emphasized the importance of establishing humanitarian corridors to provide essential aid to Gaza, according to the readout.

They also discussed coordinating efforts to promote lasting stability in the region and reinforcing the bilateral partnership between Iraq and the United States, in accordance with the Iraqi-US Strategic Framework Agreement.

Gaza facing “unparalleled humanitarian crisis”: Hamas media office

Gaza needs international assistance urgently as it faces an “unparalleled humanitarian crisis,” according to the head of the Hamas-controlled government media office.

“The magnitude of casualties, injuries, the destruction of residential units, infrastructure, public facilities, and economic losses has given rise to an unparalleled humanitarian crisis in Gaza, unlike anything seen in previous aggressions,” Salama Marouf said in a statement Tuesday.

As the humanitarian situation worsens, “there is a noticeable decline in [the] international response,” Salama added.

Decisive action was “urgently required” from the international community to halt what he called a campaign of “ethnic cleansing perpetrated by the occupation against the Palestinian people.”

Water crisis escalating in Gaza after shutdown of desalination plant: UN agency

With Gaza’s last functioning desalination plant shut down, the water crisis has escalated, risking fatalities, according to the United Nations relief agency in Gaza (UNRWA).

“Dehydration and waterborne diseases loom large, given the collapse of water and sanitation services. This includes the recent shutdown of Gaza’s last functioning seawater desalination plant,” UNRWA said in a statement Tuesday.

On Monday, one line of water was open for three hours only in the south of the Gaza Strip, providing limited water to only half of the population of Khan Younis.

“This does not solve the urgent water needs in other parts of Khan Younis, the Middle Area and Rafah. Only 14 per cent of the population in the Strip benefited from this three-hour opening of the water line,” UNRWA announced.

UNRWA added that Gaza requires 600,000 liters of fuel daily to operate water and desalination plants.

Fuel reserves at all Gaza hospitals are on the brink, it noted, with only 24 hours of supply left. The failure of backup generators would endanger thousands of patients’ lives.

84,000 pregnant women at risk in Gaza with aid stalled at Rafah crossing: WHO

The World Health Organization is unable to get aid and supplies to Gaza, potentially putting 84,000 pregnant women at risk, a spokesperson told CNN.

There are “78 cubic meters of health supplies, which is enough for the basic essential needs for 300,000 people” positioned on the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing, which is currently closed, WHO spokesperson Margaret Harris told CNN’s John Vause.

The WHO’s director-general had an agreement with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to open the crossing, but Israeli bombing has rendered the passage unsafe, she said.

“It’s a terrifying, really distressing waiting game, with all of us only wanting to help,” Harris added.

There are 84,000 pregnant women in Gaza, with many delivering every day, Harris told Vause.

“Babies don’t care about bombs, they come when they come,” she said.

Several hospitals are “out of action due to the physical damage of the bombing,” Harris continued, noting that the WHO has documented over 44 attacks on hospitals.

Israeli army says four fighters killed in infiltration bid from Lebanon

The Israeli army announced it has killed four fighters who were trying to cross the fence from Lebanon and plant an explosive device.

“A short while ago, IDF [Israeli army] observation troops spotted a terrorist squad attempting to infiltrate the security fence with Lebanon and plant an explosive device,” the army said in a statement.

“Four terrorists were killed,” it added.

Medical sources: At least 71 killed in attacks on southern Gaza

At least 71 people have been killed in overnight Israeli attacks on southern Gaza, according medical sources, with strikes hitting sites in Rafah, Khan Younis and Deir al-Balah.

Israel has continued to attack southern Gaza with air strikes despite issuing a forcible eviction order for more than a million people to leave their homes in the north of the region and make their way south.

Many of those killed are families who evacuated from Gaza City and the northern part of the Strip as ordered by Israel.

Hamas releases video of 21-year-old French-Israeli woman it claims is being held hostage

Hamas released a video Monday night of a young French-Israeli woman being held hostage in the Gaza Strip.

In the video, Mia Schem, 21, says she suffered an arm injury and was brought to the Gaza Strip.

A representative for Schem’s family stated they had approved the publication and broadcast of the video.

This is the first video Hamas has released of any of the hostages held in Gaza. Israeli authorities have announced that they believe 199 people are being held in Gaza, while a representative of Hamas claimed Monday that at least between 200-250 captives are being held across the strip.

The Israel Defense Forces said in a statement that it had informed Schem’s family about her kidnapping last week and are keeping in touch with them at this time.

They added further that they are using “all intelligence and operational means to return the abductees” and that “Hamas is trying to present itself as a humanitarian organization while acting as a hideous terrorist organization responsible for killing and kidnapping infants, women, children and the elderly.”

A representative of Al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ militant branch, earlier said the group was “committed” to protecting hostages and that it would release hostages with foreign citizenship when “the opportunity arises on the ground.”

Schem’s mother, Keren Schem, stated she had hoped her daughter was alive before seeing the video.

“My princess, my baby, is alive,” she said to Israel’s Channel 12, adding, “I did not know anything, and I had hoped that she is alive.”

“I could see that she went through something like a surgery, that she is in pain, scared, but thank God she is stable,” Keren Schem continued, referring to her daughter’s arm injury and treatment shown in the Hamas-released video.

“Wow, a sigh of relief.”

Keren Schem noted she began to believe her daughter was abducted on October 7 after word of the Hamas attacks began to spread, remarking that her family has been doing “everything alone” to work for the return of her daughter, including opening up a “communication center.”

Aid convoys in Egypt are moving toward Gaza border crossing

Humanitarian aid convoys in El-Arish are moving toward the Rafah border crossing in Gaza, state-affiliated media outlet Al-Qahera News reported early Tuesday local time.

El-Arish is about 45 kiometers (or about 28 miles) from the Rafah border crossing.

Earlier on Monday, Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry said there has been no progress in efforts to open the Rafah crossing between Egypt and the Gaza, while the Israeli prime minister’s office denied there were any arrangements for its opening.

Airplanes carrying aid from Jordan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the World Health Organization and the Red Cross have arrived at El-Arish since Thursday.

Biden speaks with leaders of Iraq, Egypt ahead of trip to region

US President Joe Biden spoke with the leaders of Iraq and Jordan on Monday ahead of a planned trip to Israel and Jordan on Wednesday.

Biden spoke with Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al-Sudani about efforts to prevent an expansion of the Israel-Palestine war.

Biden and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi also discussed ongoing efforts to alleviate the worsening humanitarian crisis in Gaza, in coordination with the UN, Jordan, the Palestinian Authority, Israel, and other regional partners, and the need to prevent a widening of the war.

Biden is set to meet with Sisi, along with other regional leaders in Amman, Jordan after visiting Israel on Wednesday.

US Marine rapid response force headed to waters near Israel

A US Marine rapid response force is headed to the waters off the coast of Israel, according to a defense official familiar with the planning.

The force, consisting of 2,000 Marines and sailors, will join a growing number of US warships and forces converging on Israel as the US seeks to send a message of deterrence to Iran and prevent the war in Gaza from spilling over into a regional conflict.

The move comes as the US military is bolstering its presence in Middle East, including deploying a second aircraft carrier to the eastern Mediterranean Sea and sending Air Force fighter jets to the region.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin had ordered that roughly 2,000 troops prepare for a potential deployment to Israel to help with tasks like medical and logistical support, according to multiple defense officials.

The order does not mean that the troops definitely will deploy, or that any will serve in a combat role if they do go to Israel, officials said. But Austin’s decision has shortened the time the identified troops will have to prepare for a deployment if they are ordered to go, according to officials.

The US already has one carrier strike group in the eastern Mediterranean Sea and a second on the way. The official would not specify where the Marine unit would go, but it could remain in the Red Sea off Israel’s southern coast, which would put US forces near the country’s two coastlines.

The 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) is part of the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group. In recent days, it has been stationed near Kuwait as part of a scheduled exercise there, but it departed early “as a result of emerging events,” Capt. Angelica White, a spokeswoman for the unit, told the Marine Corps Times last week.

The unit was preparing for a possible move toward Israel, according to reports.

The Marine unit specializes in tasks such as amphibious operations, crisis response, humanitarian assistance and certain special operations. The unit is on board the USS Bataan, an amphibious assault ship that is currently in the Gulf of Oman, officials said.

The USS Bataan and the 26th MEU have been operating in the Middle East since August as part of an effort to deter Iranian aggression in the critical waterways around of the region, including the Gulf of Oman and the Strait of Hormuz.

Canada calls for ‘unimpeded’ access to Gaza for aid

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said the country is “deeply concerned by the dire and worsening humanitarian crisis” in Gaza.

He condemned Hamas, saying that the group does not represent the Palestinian people or their aspirations.

Trudeau called for opening an unimpeded humanitarian corridor in Gaza, adding, “It is imperative that this happen.”

Almost 500,000 Israelis internally displaced: Military

Around 500,000 Israelis have been evacuated and displaced after Hamas’ attack on Israel.

“All of the communities around the Gaza Strip have been evacuated as per government directives,” Jonathan Cornicus, a spokesman for the Israeli military said, at a press briefing on Tuesday.

20 communities along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon have also been evacuated.

EU launching humanitarian air bridge to supply aid organizations in Gaza: European Commission head

The European Union is launching a humanitarian air bridge operation to Egypt that will bring supplies to Gaza, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced Monday.

“Following the horrific terrorist attack by Hamas terrorists against Israel and the aftermath, which has led to a disastrous humanitarian situation for the people of Gaza, the EU continues to step up its emergency assistance to the Palestinian people,” the European Commission said in a statement.

The EU air bridge will be “consisting of several flights to Egypt to bring lifesaving supplies to humanitarian organizations on the ground in Gaza,” the commission added.

The operation begins this week with two flights carrying humanitarian cargo from United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) including shelter items, medicines and hygiene kits, according to the EU.

The European Commission president also announced this weekend that the EU is raising its humanitarian aid to 75 million euros ($79 million) to support civilians in need in Gaza.

The EU announced “the funding will be channeled through selected EU humanitarian partners operating on the ground taking into account capacity and access.”

The Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt is the only viable outlet to get people out of the enclave and supplies into it.

But the crossing has been closed for much of the past week, with neither Gazans nor foreign nationals able to cross, and tons of vital humanitarian supplies for people in Gaza piling up on the Egyptian side of the border.

UNICEF says people in Gaza forced to use dirty water wells

UNICEF, the United Nation’s children’s fund, has said that families in Gaza have now “practically run out of water”.

“They are now forced to use dirty water from wells, increasing risks of waterborne diseases,” the organisation added, calling for a humanitarian pause “to ensure unhindered and safe access to children and families in Gaza.”

UNRWA: ‘Life is running out in Gaza’

UNRAWA, the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, said that Israel’s cutting of all water to the besieged enclave has caused people to drink from contaminated water sources, and could cause the spread of disease.

“There continues to be no water for the vast majority of the population in Gaza,” Unrwa spokesperson Juliette Touma told reporters in New York in a video conference from Amman.

“We’re talking about two million people in the Gaza Strip who do not have water and water is running out and water is life. Life is running out of Gaza,” said Touma.

“We are very concerned about the spread of waterborne diseases if water continues not to be available in Gaza because we do know that people are resorting to dirty water sources, including wells,” she added.

WHO warns of an “imminent” public health crisis as Gaza is running out of water

The World Health Organization warned Monday that Gaza faces an “imminent” public health crisis as the enclave is running out of water.

The limited amount of water available is creating a desperate situation as the lives of more than 3,500 patients in 35 hospitals located in the Palestinian enclave are at immediate risk, the WHO said via the social media platform X.

The organization also called for “unobstructed access for humanitarian aid into Gaza.”

The WHO added that over 110 attacks on health care facilities have been carried out by Israel, in Gaza and the occupied West Bank.

The attacks have been recorded from the start of the war on 7 October, until 15 October.

UK PM urges avoiding escalation in calls with presidents of Turkey and Palestinian Authority

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak stressed the importance of avoiding regional escalation in the Israel-Hamas conflict during calls Monday with the presidents of the Palestinian Authority and Turkey.

In a call with Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, Sunak “expressed his condolences for the deaths of Palestinian civilians, who have been caught up in the aftermath of Hamas’s terror attack,” a Downing Street spokesperson said.

“The leaders agreed on the importance of avoiding further regional escalation and ensuring calm” in the area, the spokesperson added.

Sunak announced Monday that the United Kingdom will be sending 10 million pounds, or about $12.2 million, in aid to Palestinians affected by the conflict.

Sunak also had a call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Both leaders “agreed to work together to mitigate against further escalation,” the Downing Street spokesperson said.

“The leaders also agreed to work together with international partners to reinvigorate the Middle East Peace Process and bring about a peaceful and lasting resolution to this conflict,” the spokesperson added.

Aid for Gaza is “ready and now it must be able to proceed”: French FM

France will give 10 million euros — approximately $10.55 million — to United Nations agencies and humanitarian NGOs to help the population of Gaza, the French foreign minister told journalists Monday in Beirut.

“This aid is ready and now it must be able to proceed. It’s an emergency,” Catherine Colonna said of aid prepared by the international community for Gaza.

The minister added that “a few dozen, perhaps a little more than 100” French citizens were present in Gaza, mainly in the southern part of the territory, and that France is working to “help them leave Gaza as quickly as possible.”

Nineteen French citizens have been killed following the Hamas attacks on Israel on October 7, Colonna continued.

Putin says Russia is ready to help end Israel-Hamas conflict by diplomatic means: Kremlin

Russian President Vladimir Putin addressed the escalating Israel-Hamas conflict in calls with several leaders on Monday, the Kremlin said.

Putin spoke with leaders from Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Syria, Iran and Egypt.

The Russian president told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Russia is ready to help end the conflict peacefully, by diplomatic means, according to a Kremlin readout of the call.

“Fundamental readiness to continue carrying out purposeful work in the interests of ending the Palestinian-Israeli confrontation and achieving a peaceful settlement through political and diplomatic means was confirmed,” it read.

During his conversation with the five leaders on Monday, Putin blamed the current escalation in the Middle East on “the long-term stagnation” in settling the conflict, Kremlin readout added.

The Russian president emphasized during the calls “the severity of the humanitarian situation in Gaza and the need to lift the blockade of the sector for the immediate delivery of medicine, food and other vital aid,” according to the Kremlin.

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