Israeli Leaders Defiant, Vow to Continue Gaza Strip War Despite Mounting International Pressure

Israeli Leaders Defiant, Vow To Continue Gaza Strip War Despite Mounting International Pressure

In the face of increasing international pressure, including from key ally the United States, Israeli leaders affirmed on Wednesday their determination to press ahead with the ongoing Gaza Strip war, now in its third month. The conflict was sparked by the unprecedented October 7 attacks on Israel by Palestinian militant group Hamas, which Israeli officials claim resulted in the deaths of 1,200 individuals, predominantly civilians.

The war has inflicted severe devastation upon Gaza, leaving more than 18,600 people dead, with women and children constituting the majority of the casualties, according to the health ministry. Infrastructure, including roads, schools, and hospitals, has been decimated, and the scale of destruction has been described as “unparalleled.”

Despite the UN General Assembly’s recent overwhelming endorsement of a non-binding resolution calling for a ceasefire, Gaza has continued to witness fresh strikes and intense battles. Reportedly, the heaviest fighting has been concentrated in Gaza City, the largest urban center, as well as in Khan Yunis and Rafah in the south, according to correspondents from AFP.

The already dire situation has been compounded by wintery rains that have battered the territory. The UN estimates that out of Gaza’s 2.4 million population, 1.9 million people have been displaced, forced to live in makeshift tents as essential supplies such as food, drinking water, medicines, and fuel dwindle. Concerns about the spread of diseases, including meningitis, jaundice, and respiratory tract infections, have also intensified, as per the warning issued by the UN.

Ameen Edwan, a resident of Gaza, shared the harsh realities faced by the displaced population, recounting how rainwater seeped into their makeshift shelter at the Al-Aqsa Martyrs hospital. With a shortage of nylon covers, they resorted to using stones and sand to keep the water out, highlighting the desperate conditions faced by those affected.

The World Health Organization reported that only 107 humanitarian aid trucks entered Gaza from Egypt, a significant drop from the daily average of 500 before the events of October 7. This limited flow of aid exacerbates the challenges faced by the beleaguered population, further straining their access to essential resources.

As the conflict persists, the international community grapples with finding a resolution to the longstanding crisis. The determination of Israeli leaders to continue with the war in the face of mounting international pressure further underscores the complexity and gravity of the situation, leaving the people of Gaza in a state of uncertainty and anguish.


Source: The New Arab

Kenya Sends Farm Workers to Israel to Address Labour Shortage

Kenya Sends Farm Workers To Israel To Address Labour Shortage

Kenya’s labour ministry has announced that it will send 1,500 farm workers to Israel, following in the footsteps of Malawi, which sent 221 young people to work on Israeli farms recently. The workers will be deployed on renewable three-year contracts with a guaranteed net monthly income of $1,500. Israel has turned to Africa to fill the labour gap on its farms after the departure of over 10,000 foreign workers, primarily from Thailand, due to the war with Hamas. The country has also restricted the entry of Palestinian workers, who formerly comprised nearly 20% of the agricultural labour force. Israel’s ambassador in Kenya stated that plans are underway to recruit farm workers from Uganda, while recruitment in Tanzania has already begun. Concerns have been raised about the workers’ safety and the working conditions they may face in Israel, given previous reports of unsafe practices and poor living conditions for migrant farm workers. However, Israel has implemented additional measures to ensure fair treatment of foreign workers and has stated that they enjoy the same employment rights as Israeli citizens. The move has received mixed reactions in Kenya, with some viewing it as an opportunity for much-needed jobs, while others express concerns about workers’ welfare in a conflict-prone region.


Source: BBC

Israeli Forces Escalate Operations in Gaza Strip Amid Reports of Heavy Bombing and Communication Blackout

File Photo: Aftermath Of Israeli Strikes On Gaza

Israeli air and ground forces have intensified their operations in the Gaza Strip, according to Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, Israel’s chief military spokesperson. Reports have emerged of heavy bombing in the besieged enclave, accompanied by a disruption of internet and mobile phone services within the Palestinian territory.

Speaking at a televised news briefing, Rear Admiral Hagari stated, “In the last hours, we intensified the attacks in Gaza,” indicating a potential commencement of the long-anticipated ground invasion of the area. The Israeli air force has been conducting extensive strikes on tunnels and other infrastructure, while preparations for expanding ground operations are underway.

The escalation in Israeli military activities comes in response to a deadly attack on Israel by Hamas on October 7. Since then, Israel has been carrying out an intense campaign of aerial bombardment. As tensions rise, Israeli forces have amassed outside Gaza, heightening concerns about a potential ground invasion.

The impact of the intensified operations is evident in the Gaza Strip. Palestinian mobile phone service provider Jawwal reported that phone and internet services have been disrupted due to heavy bombardment. The Palestine Red Crescent Society released a statement expressing complete loss of contact with its operations room in Gaza and its teams on the ground.

While Israel has stated its preparations for a ground invasion, the United States and Arab countries have urged restraint, advocating for a delay in the operation. The concern is that a ground invasion would result in a significant increase in civilian casualties in the densely populated coastal strip, potentially igniting a broader conflict.

The situation in the Gaza Strip remains precarious as the conflict escalates. The international community continues to monitor developments closely, hoping for a de-escalation of tensions and a peaceful resolution to the crisis.


Source: SABC