Israel-Hamas war: Mediators seek further truce extensions

World Wednesday 29/November/2023 09:04 AM
By: DW
Israel-Hamas war: Mediators seek further truce extensions

Gaza: Mediators are continuing to work on getting another extension to the temporary truce between Israel and Hamas group, according to Qatar's Foreign Ministry.

That's as the initial two-day extension approaches expiry on Wednesday.

There have also been reports from both the AFP and Reuters news agencies that US and Israeli intelligence officials are meeting with Qatari and Egyptian mediators to get another extension.

CIA Director William J. Burns and Mossad chief David Barnea were set to meet with Qatari and Egyptian mediators according to those reports.

The temporary halt in hostilities has allowed hostages to be released in exchange for Palestinian prisoners held by Israel.

On Tuesday another 12 hostages were released and 30 more Palestinian prisoners were freed.

The temporary truce, which began on Friday, has also allowed aid to flow into Gaza. The enclave had been sealed off in the wake of Hamas' terror attack on October 7, during which around 1,200 people were killed and some 240 people were taken hostage.

G7 foreign ministers support extension of truce

Foreign ministers of the Group of Seven (G7) countries on Tuesday expressed their support for an extension of the truce between Israel and Hamas.

"Every effort must be made to ensure humanitarian support for civilians, including food, water, fuel, and medical supplies," the G7 said in a statement.

"We support the further extension of this pause and future pauses as needed to enable assistance to be scaled up, and to facilitate the release of all hostages," the joint statement added.

The G7 foreign ministers urged the release of all hostages "immediately and unconditionally" and emphasized "Israel's right to defend itself," in accordance with international law.

The G7 diplomats also highlighted the importance of protecting civilians and expressed commitment to work with regional partners to stop the conflict from escalating.

"We remain committed to a Palestinian state as part of a two-state solution that enables both Israelis and Palestinians to live in a just, lasting, and secure peace," the statement concluded.

WHO worried about the impact of disease on displaced Gazans

The World Health Organisation is worried about the spread of disease among the people displaced by the fighting between Israel and  Hamas in Gaza.

"Those 1.9 million people displaced in Gaza, started to suffer from different types of diseases, communicable and non-communicable diseases, due to a shortage of basic life requirements like clean water, food, shelters, especially in this cold weather," Dr. Ahmed Al-Mandhari WHO Regional Director told DW.

He said the WHO was "trying our best" to make use of the increase in aid deliveries into Gaza afforded by a temporary truce.

"The amount of fuel entering Gaza is really low, below expectations," he told DW.

"So fuel is becoming like an oxygen to the people there, to serve them to help them, especially hospitals, but also the infrastructure like water desalination stations that have stopped because of lack of fuel," Al-Mandhari said.

He said any plans to provide humanitarian aid to those that need it was hampered by the lack of fuel.

"For example, the availability of water, clean water, for use is very low due to nonfunctioning desalination stations, and human waste stations are nonfunctioning because of either direct attacks or the lack of fuel," Al-Mandhari said.