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Pressure mounts on Israel to halt military operations in Rafah

Immigration News

Fidel Rahmati
Fidel Rahmatihttps://www.khaama.com
Fidai Rahmati is the editor and content writer for Khaama Press. You may follow him at Twitter @FidelRahmati

Israel’s military operation in Rafah and the seizure of Gaza’s only land crossing dampened hopes for a ceasefire, eliciting global backlash. The UN warned of an impending disaster in Gaza, while the U.S. intelligence chief discussed halting operations with the Israeli Prime Minister.

Antonio Guterres, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, responded Wednesday, May 8, during a press conference held at the organization’s headquarters in New York to the latest developments in Gaza, calling the seizure of the Rafah crossing by the Israeli army concerning.

According to him, “Military operations in Rafah will cause a humanitarian disaster and result in numerous civilian casualties. Rafah is a hub for humanitarian operations in Gaza, and attacking it will undermine these operations. An attack on Rafah would be a strategic mistake, a disaster, and a humanitarian nightmare.” He continues to urge all countries to prevent a full-scale disaster in Gaza.

Concurrently, Lloyd Austin, the U.S. Secretary of Defense, confirmed during a hearing yesterday that Washington has postponed the delivery of thousands of bombs to Israel due to concerns about Israel’s ground assault on Rafah after reviews.

He also stated in a U.S. Senate hearing that the delivery of these bombs was halted last week and that other short-term planned arms packages are under review.

Following this action by the U.S. Department of Defense, Agence France-Presse reported, quoting an Israeli official, that William Burns, the head of U.S. intelligence, and Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, discussed the possibility of halting military operations on Rafah in exchange for the release of hostages.

The Agence France-Presse report quoting an Israeli official stated: “Both parties discussed the possibility of stopping Israel’s operations in Rafah in exchange for the release of hostages.”

While Israel has heightened international concerns, Hamas on Monday of this week agreed to a ceasefire proposal that had been put forward by Egyptian and Qatari mediators after months of negotiations.

According to Reuters, this proposal, agreed to by Hamas, includes a ceasefire in three stages, which in addition to exchanging Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners in Israel, involves the withdrawal of the Israeli army from the Gaza Strip and the reconstruction of this narrow coastal strip according to a plan previously prepared by Qatar, Egypt, and the USA.

Reports indicate that with Israel opposing this proposed ceasefire, negotiations have commenced in Cairo with the presence of an Israeli delegation.

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