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No truce deal could satiate Netanyahu’s thirst for Gazans' blood, set on attacking Rafah

No truce deal could satiate Netanyahu’s thirst for Gazans blood, set on attacking Rafah

In a joint statement released on Thursday, the leaders of Canada, Australia, and New Zealand called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, expressing grave concerns over indications of Israel's planned military operation in Rafah.

The statement urged Israel to reconsider its offensive into Rafah, emphasizing the catastrophic consequences it could entail.

The leaders acknowledged the need for a ceasefire but stressed that it should not be one-sided. They called for Hamas to disarm and release all remaining hostages for any ceasefire to be effective.

Referring to the International Court of Justice's January ruling in a genocide case brought by South Africa, the leaders argued that Israel must protect civilians and provide essential humanitarian assistance in compliance with international humanitarian law.

Meanwhile, Spain and Ireland have demanded an urgent review by the European Commission of Israel's human rights conduct in Gaza. The leaders of both countries expressed deep concern over the potential assault on Rafah and called for immediate action from the international community. They specifically highlighted the need for the release of hostages and access to humanitarian supplies.

Spain, particularly vocal on the matter, is confident that European countries are unifying around a firmer position. Ireland echoed the sentiment, urging the European Commission to take concrete action against Israel's actions in Gaza.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan declared Turkiye's readiness to cooperate with Egypt to rebuild Gaza during his first visit to the country since 2012. Erdogan emphasized the humanitarian tragedy in Gaza and pledged to stand in solidarity with Egypt to bring an end to the bloodshed. The two leaders also discussed boosting trade and cooperation in energy and defence.

Erdogan's visit comes amid inconclusive talks held in Cairo between Israel, Egypt, Qatar, and the United States on a possible Gaza truce agreement. Egypt has made it clear that it will not allow an exodus of Gaza refugees over its border.

As international pressure mounts, Israel remains resolute in pressing ahead with its offensive against Hamas in Rafah, the last refuge for displaced Palestinians in southern Gaza. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, facing growing pressure, asserted that the offensive would proceed after allowing civilians to vacate the area. Netanyahu did not indicate the timing or the destination for the hundreds of thousands of displaced Palestinians from Rafah.

Netanyahu's office stated that Hamas had not presented any new offer for a hostage deal in the Cairo talks, dismissing the group's demands as "ludicrous." Relatives of Israeli hostages protested, barricading the Israeli defence headquarters in response to what they deemed a scandalous decision by Israel not to send negotiators to the next Cairo talks.

The situation on the ground remains tense, with fears of an imminent assault on Rafah. As night fell, over 2,000 Palestinians who had sought shelter in Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis arrived in Rafah after being ordered to evacuate by the Israeli army.

International leaders, including French President Emmanuel Macron and German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, have expressed concerns over the potential humanitarian catastrophe and the displacement of civilians. Macron, in a phone call with Netanyahu, warned that further forced displacements could escalate regional tensions.

The World Health Organization representative for Gaza and the West Bank, Richard Peeperkorn, labelled an assault on Rafah as an "unfathomable catastrophe," potentially expanding the humanitarian disaster in the region beyond imagination.

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TAGS:HamasFree PalestineIsrael Palestine Conflict
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