Spread the love

Hopes for a truce revived in Gaza, first aid boat unloaded

Photo: Israeli Army via Agence France-Presse Departing from Cyprus on Tuesday, a boat from the Spanish NGO Open Arms carrying 200 tonnes of food from the organization World Kitchen Central (WCK) arrived on the coast of Gaza on Friday where it finished unloading its cargo on Saturday.

Adel Zaanoun – Agence France-Presse and Mathieu Gorse – Agence France-Presse Respectively to the Gaza Strip and Jerusalem

2:39 p.m.

  • Middle East

Hopes for a truce in the Gaza Strip between Israel and the Islamist movement Hamas appear to be revived, as the first aid boat finished unloading its cargo in the besieged Palestinian territory on Saturday and threatened by famine.

Meanwhile, Israeli strikes continued against the besieged Palestinian territory where 36 members of the same family were killed in the Nuseirat refugee camp during a “bloody night” marked by 60 airstrikes, according to the Hamas Ministry of Health.

“This is my mother, my father, my aunt, my brothers,” Mohammad al-Tabatibi, 19, told AFP, pointing to the bodies lined up in Al-Aqsa hospital in Deir al-Balah. “I don’t know why they bombed the house,” said Mohammad, himself wounded in the left hand.

Dozens of people gathered at the hospital around the bodies, including those of at least two young children, wrapped in body bags or simple white sheets, according to images from AFP.

The Israeli army said in a statement that it had targeted “several terrorists holed up” in the Nuseirat camp. Asked by AFP, she assured that the strike mentioned in this press release was “another incident” than that in which the al-Tabatibi family was killed and which she did not confirm was the origin.

The Palestinian Islamist movement, which has so far demanded a definitive ceasefire from Israel before any agreement on the release of the hostages held in Gaza, said it was ready for a six-week truce, during which 42 hostages, women , children, elderly and sick people, could be released in exchange for 20 to 50 Palestinian prisoners for each released hostage.

With this in mind, Hamas demands the “withdrawal of the army from all towns and populated areas”, the “return of the displaced without restrictions” and the entry of at least 500 trucks of humanitarian aid per day in Gaza, one of its executives told AFP.

The American Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, for his part, declared that the mediating countries – which had not managed to secure a truce agreement as they had hoped before the start of the Ramadan Monday — were working “hard” to this end.

The office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that an Israeli delegation would travel to Qatar as part of the negotiations, without specifying when. The White House said it was “cautiously optimistic.”

“No more normal-sized babies”

In addition to raids and fighting, the UN fears widespread famine in the Palestinian territory, particularly in the North, ravaged by war and difficult to access.

Leaving Cyprus on Tuesday, a boat from the Spanish NGO Open Arms carrying 200 tonnes of food from the organization World Kitchen Central (WCK) arrived on the coast of Gaza on Friday where it ended on Saturday unload its cargo.

“All cargo has been unloaded and is being prepared for distribution,” WCK said on Saturday, which said it was preparing a second aid ship to Cyprus, with “hundreds of tons of food.”

Aid transported by land enters the south of the Gaza Strip after having been inspected by Israel, but remains very insufficient compared to the needs of the 2.4 million inhabitants.

The Open Arms ship had previously been subjected to “a complete security check”, according to the Israeli army which is imposing a complete siege on the territory.

International efforts are increasing to try to deliver more aid directly to northern Gaza, by airdrops or via a new maritime corridor from Cyprus.

Germany, which joined for the first time on Saturday the countries participating in an aid airlift from Jordan, announced a first airdrop of four tons of foodstuffs over northern Gaza.

Two Jordanian planes, an American plane and another Egyptian also participated in the operation, according to the Jordanian army.

The UN, the European Union, the United States and other countries insist, however, that the delivery of aid by air or sea could not replace land routes.

The situation is dramatic to the point that “doctors no longer see normal-sized babies” in Gaza, protested Friday Dominic Allen, responsible for the Palestinian territories of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

Operation on Rafah ?

The war was sparked on October 7 by an unprecedented attack by Hamas commandos infiltrated from Gaza into southern Israel, which resulted in the deaths of at least 1,160 people, most of them civilians, according to one count from AFP from official Israeli sources.

According to Israel, around 250 people have been kidnapped and 130 of them are still hostages in Gaza, of whom 32 are believed to have died.

In retaliation, Israel promised to annihilate the Hamas movement, which it considers terrorist, like the United States and the European Union. Its army launched an offensive that killed 31,553 people in the Gaza Strip, mostly civilians, according to the Hamas Ministry of Health.

While negotiations are active behind the scenes for a truce, Mr. Netanyahu approved the army's “action plans” for an offensive in Rafah, where, according to the UN, around 1,000 people are massed. 5 million Palestinians. This operation could take place in the absence of a truce agreement or after a possible six-week pause in the fighting.

“The Israeli army is ready for the operational side and for the evacuation of the population”, according to its services which give no further details on this long-announced operation, against which the United States United and the UN continue to warn.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116