Day 51-

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Day 51-
NIAS-Conflict Weekly Special Alert | The War in Gaza: Seventh Week

  IPRI Team

Israel-Hamas War: Day 57
Rosemary Kurian, Nuha Aamina, Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari

WAR ON THE GROUND 
On 2 December, BBC reported that for the second day in a row, Israel was bombarding Gaza, and the military was advising residents in some areas to flee. Khan Younis locals claimed that since the beginning of the war, the bombardment of the southern part of the city was at its worst. Israel claimed to have withdrawn its negotiation team from Qatar, where it Qatar was serving as a mediator for discussions about an extended ceasefire. 

Regional responses 
On 2 December, The Jerusalem Post reported that that the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) had launched an air attack near Damascus according to Syrian state media. 

On 2 December, Al Jazeera reported that Qatar which has played a prominent role in mediating in truce agreement stated that the talks on the pause of the war are continuing with Israel and Palestinians. However, the new attacks of Gaza have worsened the situation. On 1 December, Libya released four terrorists belonging to Hamas, on the request of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the President of Turkey. They were detained in 2016 after being found guilty of trafficking arms across the Gaza border. 

Global responses 
On 2 December, Al Jazeera cited a Wall Street Journal report which claimed that the US supplied ‘bunker buster’ bombs to Israel for its war on Gaza. Based on the report, the US had been supplying an array of bombs, including those that could penetrate hard ground before exploding. The bombs were used by the US during its war in Afghanistan.

On 2 December, Alexander De Croo, the Prime Minister of Belgium, told Isaac Herzog, the President of Israel, that Belgium wanted “no more civilian killings” in Gaza. After the temporary truce in Gaza ended and military operations restarted, De Croo reiterated that Israel must prevent civilian casualties.


About the Authors

Rosemary Kurian and Nuha Aamina are undergraduate scholars from St Joseph's University, Bangalore. Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari are postgraduate scholars from Pondicherry University.

Curated by Dhriti Mukherjee and Shamini, Research Assistants at NIAS.


Israel-Hamas War: Day 55

Rosemary Kurian, Nuha Aamina, Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari

WAR ON THE GROUND 
On 30 November, Hamas said that two of its assailants opened fire at a bus stop in Jerusalem, killing three Israelis and injuring at least six others. Hamas explained that this was because of Israeli “crimes” throughout Gaza.

In a related development, Israel prolonged the ceasefire in Gaza for a seventh day, while working with international peacekeepers to negotiate the release of additional hostages. 12 Israelis and four Thais who were held captive by Hamas returned to Israel on 29 November; 30 Palestinian women and teenage boys were released from Israeli prisons in return. 

Regional responses
On 30 November, Egypt's state media body reported that the negotiators in the Gaza war, Egypt and Qatar, were trying to extend the humanitarian truce by two more days. This would involve releasing more prisoners and increasing humanitarian aid. 

On 30 November, Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) Spokesperson Unit said that the IDF had intercepted a drone launched from Lebanon. The Israeli military retaliated to the cross-border fire along the border of southern Lebanon, according to UN Peacekeeping forces in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

Global responses
On 30 November, Pedro Sanchez, the Prime Minister of Spain, expressed his doubts over Israeli compliance with International Humanitarian Law in the war. Sanchez stated that based on the death of children in Gaza and available footage, Israel might be violating international law. He denounced the killings in Gaza, calling them “not acceptable.” Further, he called for a permanent ceasefire in the war. Sanchez additionally called on the European Union (EU) to recognise the Palestinian state.

On 30 November, Antony Blinken, the Secretary of State of the US, told Israel that its military operations must resume only after the safety of civilians in southern Gaza is ensured. During his meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, Blinken also reaffirmed his support for Israel’s right to self defence, while expressing hope for the continuation of the truce. Blinken is set to  visit Ramallah to meet Mahmoud Abbas, the President of the Palestinian Authority.

On 30 November, China issued a proposal for the UN Security Council (UNSC) to resolve the Palestine-Israel conflict. It urged the council to convene an “authoritative and effective” peace conference at the earliest. China further stated that the UNSC needs to pay attention to the international community’s call to stop the fighting, through the enforcement of a  “comprehensive ceasefire.”

About the Authors
Rosemary Kurian and Nuha Aamina are undergraduate scholars from St Joseph's University, Bangalore. Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari are postgraduate scholars from Pondicherry University.

Curated By
Dhriti Mukherjee and Shamini are Research Assistants at NIAS.


Israel-Hamas War: Day 54

Rosemary Kurian, Nuha Aamina, Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari

WAR ON THE GROUND 
On 29 November, Israel claimed that it had killed “two senior terrorists” in a raid on the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank. Additionally, according to the Palestinian Authority, two children in Jenin were also killed in a round of gunfire. Israel reportedly received a list of hostages who were scheduled to be released on 29 November. Additionally, discussions are ongoing in Qatar to try and extend the humanitarian pause. 

Regional response 
On 29 November, The Jerusalem Post reported that Qatar was seeking to mediate a deal that would allow for the release of all the hostages. Qatar, along with Egypt, was working on two deals, of which one is directed towards ending the war in Gaza.

On 29 November, the Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud at the United Nations Security Council emphasized to initiate cease fire and urged the UNSC to take responsibility for the soaring tensions between Israel and Hamas. He said: “We are here to make a clear statement that a truce is not enough. What is needed is a ceasefire.” 

Global responses 
On 28 November, Osama Hamdas, a senior Hamas official, invited tech mogul Elon Musk into Palestine to gain a rounded perspective and witness “the massacres and destruction committed against the people of Gaza,” after Musk visited Israel. Hamdas added that “within 50 days, Israel dropped more than 40,000 tonnes of explosives” in Gaza. He further asked the US to review their “relationship with Israel and to stop supplying them with weapons.” 

On 29 November, the UN observed the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. At the UN headquarters in New York, an exhibit called ‘Palestine– a Land with a was displayed. To commemorate the day, marches and protests took place around the world, including Lebanon, Germany, Bangladesh and South Africa.

On 29 November, trade unions in India urged the government to support Palestine. Ten prominent trade unions issued a joint statement saying that Israel’s occupation in Palestine had “decimated” the latter’s economy, making it dependent on Israel for employment. Members of the Centre of Indian Trade, All India Trade Union Congress, and other Indian members of the World Federation of Trade Unions, wore black badges to work. They participated in marches, protests, and sit-ins. In the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, around 20 districts held Pro-Palestine protests. In the state of Orissa, six trade unions and activists held protests against Israel’s military.

On 29 November, the UN called for an “irreversible” two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict. Tatiana Valovaya, the Director-General of the UN office in Geneva, stated on behalf of the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres that the two-state solution would imply “Israel and Palestine living side-by-side in peace and security with Jerusalem as the capital of both states.” 

About the Authors
Rosemary Kurian and Nuha Aamina are undergraduate scholars from St Joseph's University, Bangalore. Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari are postgraduate scholars from Pondicherry University.

Curated By
Dhriti Mukherjee and Shamini are Research Assistants at NIAS.


Israel-Hamas War: Day 53 

Rosemary Kurian, Nuha Aamina, Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari

WAR ON THE GROUND
On 28 November, the BBC quoted the Israeli military, who said that several of their soldiers were “lightly injured” in the northern Gaza area. Additionally, the Hamas affirmed that there had been fighting, but placed the blame on Israel and maintained its commitment to the interim cease-fire. After a 48-hour extension was agreed upon  on 27 November, Israel and Hamas were at peace for five days. For every Israeli hostage that is returned from Gaza, three Palestinians will be released from Israeli prisons. The UN has used the ceasefire to deliver much-needed aid to Gaza, but it claims that more aid is still needed.

Regional responses
On 28 November, Iran's semi-official Tasnim news reported that the planned trip of Ibrahim Raisi, President of Iran, to Turkey, was “postponed to another date.”  Raisi was set to hold disucssions over the Gaza war. A reason for postponement had not been provided.

Global responses
On 28 November, the World Health Organisation (WHO) warned that more people could die of diseases than bombing in Gaza. Margaret Harris, a spokesperson for the WHO, expressed her concerns over the rise in outbreaks of infectious diseases in the Gaza Strip, referring to a UN report on living conditions in northern Gaza. She further stated that there are “no medicines, no vaccination activities, no access to safe water and hygiene, and no food.”

On 28 November, William Burns, the Director of the CIA, and David Barnea, the Mossad chief, met Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani, the Prime Minister of Qatar, to “build on” the two-day extension of the truce between Israel and Hamas. An anonymous American source stated that the purpose of this meeting is also “to initiate further discussions about the next phase of a potential deal.”

On 28 November, Arab News quoted US officials who told Israel that their efforts to eradicate the Hamas after the temporary ceasefire must be “carefully thought through.” Following widespread global condemnation of Israel’s campaign in northern Gaza, the US stated that Israel must avoid “further displacement” and casualties of civilians in southern Gaza, and must operate with greater precision. Israel has stated that it would restart its campaign after the truce comes to an end to eradicate the Hamas, who it sees as a threat.

On 28 November, the Thai Foreign Minister Parnpree Bahiddha-Nukara met the Thai national who were held as hostages by Hamas. They were safely deported to shamir Medical Center in Israel. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kingdom of Thailand the minister “congratulated them on their safe release and expressed his hope that they would return home as soon as possible.”On 27 November, a US official stated that Antony Blinken, the Secretary of State of the US, will be paying his third visit to the Middle East since the Israel-Hamas war began. He said that Blinken plans to stress the need for an increased flow of humanitarian aid into Gaza as well as “secure the release of all hostages.” Blinken will also discuss the future of Israel and Palestine with regional partners in the Middle East, as well as stress the need to “establish an independent Palestinian state.” 

About the Authors
Rosemary Kurian and Nuha Aamina are undergraduate scholars from St Joseph's University, Bangalore. Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari are postgraduate scholars from Pondicherry University.

Curated By
Dhriti Mukherjee and Shamini are Research Assistants at NIAS.


Israel-Hamas War: Day 52

Rosemary Kurian, Nuha Aamina, Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari

WAR ON THE GROUND 

On 27 November, the fourth and last day of the current ceasefire, Israel said that negotiations over the hostage situation and the anticipated release of prisoners are still ongoing. The temporary ceasefire between Israel and Hamas is being extended through ongoing international efforts. While Hamas claims it is requesting an extension, Israel is offering a one day ceasefire for every ten more hostages freed from Gaza. As part of the agreement between Israel and Hamas, 39 Israeli hostages in Gaza have been freed thus far, and 117 Palestinians have been released from Israeli prisons. More truckloads of humanitarian aid, including food, fuel, and medications, were delivered by relief organizations into the Gaza Strip on Monday. 
 
Regional responses
On 27 November, Riyad Al-Maliki, the Foreign Minister of Palestinian Authority, said that Qatar, Egypt, the US, and the European Union (EU) along with Spain, are working to extend the ceasefire in Gaza. While addressing a news conference in Barcelona, he  said the truce could be extended for two to four days.

On 27 November, Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, the Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia, arrived in Barcelona to discuss the war between Israel and Hamas. Effective international action, commitment to protect civilians, and ensuring the adherence to humanitarian laws were among the topics of discussion in the meet. Prince Faisal said: “The only sure result is more destruction, radicalization and further conflict at the expense of Palestinian lives, as well as regional security, including that of Israel.” 

On 26 November, Bisher Khasawneh, the Prime Minister of Jordan, called the displacement of Palestinians a “red line” that constitutes a fundamental violation of the peace treaty between Israel and Jordan. He spoke on the key provision of treaty that defends against forced displacement, stating that such action would threaten Jordan’s national security.

Global responses
On 27 November, the BBC reported that the US Navy captured five armed men responsible for seizing an Israeli-linked commercial tanker off the coast of Yemen on 26 November. The assailants were caught by the USS Mason, an American warship. Following their capture, two missiles were fired from the Houthi-controlled territory, which failed to reach their target. 

On 27 November, Elon Musk, an American tech entrepreneur, lent his support to Israel in its mission to destroy Hamas, during an unprecedented visit to Israel. The owner of the social media platform X, as well as Tesla and SpaceX, expressed the need to end all propaganda that prompted the attack on 7 October. During a discussion with Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, Musk agreed to Israel’s goal to destroy Hamas for prospective peace in Palestine, stating that he would “like to help as well.”

On 27 November, the Thai-Iran Alumni Association’s said that their talks with Hamas helped  the release of the Thai hostages in the temporary truce. Lerpong Syed, the President of the Association, said that “the chances of getting released with the first group” would have been low if Thailand relied on its foreign ministry or “asked other countries for help.” 

On 27 November, Beijing’s foreign ministry said that Wang Yi, a diplomat of China, is set to visit New York this week. The purpose of this visit is to hold a meeting on the UN Security Council (UNSC) meeting on the Israel-Hamas conflict. Yi will preside over the meeting.

On 26 November, a UN official noted that the deliveries of humanitarian aid to northern Gaza have caused “immense relief”. Northern Gaza, which was cut off for weeks, finally received aid during the truce period after UN agencies secured safe passage into the region. 

About the Authors
Rosemary Kurian and Nuha Aamina are undergraduate scholars from St Joseph's University, Bangalore. Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari are postgraduate scholars from Pondicherry University.

Curated By
Dhriti Mukherjee and Shamini are Research Assistants at NIAS.


Israel-Hamas War: Day 51

Rosemary Kurian, Nuha Aamina, Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari

WAR ON THE GROUND 

On 26 November, more Israeli hostages were released. A deal between Israel and Hamas resulted in the release of 26 Israeli hostages, all of whom were women and children. In addition, over the course of two days, 78 Palestinian inmates were freed from Israeli prisons. In the meantime, as part of an independent agreement between Hamas and the Egyptian government, 14 Thai hostages and one Filipino were released. The fighting between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip had paused for four days, and 26 November was the third day. During the ceasefire, Gazans were able to obtain much-needed supplies such as food, fuel, and medication. 

On 26 November, a Saudi humanitarian organisation sent relief convoys into Gaza via the Rafah crossing, carrying food, medicine, and shelter supplies. 20 aircrafts carrying the supplies touched down at Egypt’s Al-Arish airport early that morning. The aid was then divided among a number of trucks which would be unloaded at the Rafah crossing on the Palestinian side. The UN has said that the ceasefire made it possible to deliver the largest volume of food, water, and medication deliveries since the beginning of the conflict. Additionally, fuel was allowed to travel to northern regions for the first time in a month.

REGIONAL RESPONSES
On 26 November, Diaa Rashwan, the Dead of the State Information Service of Egypt, said that Egypt received the list of 13 Israeli hostages and 39 Palestinians who were set to be released the same day. Rashwan stated: “The truce is proceeding without roadblocks.” She added that 120 aid trucks crossed from Egypt into Gaza.

On 26 November, Syrian media claimed that the Damascus international airport in was attacked by Israel. Flights scheduled to arrive at the airport were diverted to airports in Latakia and Aleppo. The media added: “It wasn't long. Israel just bombed Damascus International Airport.” 
On 26 November, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Qatar’s spokesman Majed Al-Ansari anticipates to increase the truce agreement. He stated: “"Within this kind of mediation, you're always going to find both sides saying that the other side did not abide by the agreement.” He further added that he is consulting his counterparts about the transportation of Humanitarian aids across the borders. 

On 25 November, Ayman Safadi, the Foreign Minister of Jordan, labelled 2023 as the bloodiest year for Palestinians in a decade. He stressed the importance of working with the international community to stop the war. Safadi also said that the displacement of people was not the solution and would act as a catalyst to worsen the situation.

GLOBAL RESPONSE
On 26 November, Al Jazeera reported on the White House’s request to the US Senate to scrap restrictions on its key weapons stockpile, enabling easy access to Israel. In its latest supplementary budget, the White House proposed changes to the War Reserve Stockpile Allies- Israel (WRSA-I) policies, a US weapons stockpile based in Israel for US use during regional conflicts. This would remove most restrictions for Israel to access these weapons at a cheaper rate.

About the Authors
Rosemary Kurian and Nuha Aamina are undergraduate scholars from St Joseph's University, Bangalore. Rishita Verma and Gananthula Uma Maheshwari are postgraduate scholars from Pondicherry University.

Curated By
Dhriti Mukherjee and Shamini are Research Assistants at NIAS.

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