Ramadan brings no relief as Israel-Hamas war rages in Gaza, 67 killed | World News - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Ramadan brings no relief as Israel-Hamas war rages in Gaza, 67 killed

PTI |
Mar 12, 2024 01:52 AM IST

Gaza's Health Ministry said the bodies of 67 people killed by Israeli strikes, bringing the Palestinian death toll to more than 31,112 since the war began.

With no end to fighting sight, Palestinians in Gaza began fasting Monday for the holy month of Ramadan as hunger worsens across the strip and pressure grows on Israel over the growing humanitarian crisis.

Decorations for Ramadan at a temporary camp for displaced Palestinians west of Deir al-Balah, Gaza, (Bloomberg)
Decorations for Ramadan at a temporary camp for displaced Palestinians west of Deir al-Balah, Gaza, (Bloomberg)

The United States, Qatar and Egypt had hoped to broker a cease-fire ahead of the normally joyous month of dawn-to-dusk fasting that would include the release of dozens of Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners, and the entry of a large amount of humanitarian aid. However, the cease-fire talks stalled last week.

HT launches Crick-it, a one stop destination to catch Cricket, anytime, anywhere. Explore now!

Gaza's Health Ministry said the bodies of 67 people killed by Israeli strikes were brought to hospitals over the past 24 hours, bringing the Palestinian death toll to more than 31,112 since the war began. The ministry doesn't differentiate between civilians and combatants in its count, but says that women and children make up two-thirds of the dead.

The war began when Hamas-led militants stormed into southern Israel on October 7, killing some 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and taking around 250 hostage. Hamas is still believed to be holding around 100 captives.

Five months of war have forced around 80 per cent of Gaza's 2.3 million people from their homes and pushed hundreds of thousands to the brink of famine.

GERMAN LEADER CALLS FOR NEW, LONGER CEASE-FIRE AND MORE AID FOR GAZA

Berlin – German Chancellor Olaf Scholz is calling for a new and longer humanitarian cease-fire and says that more humanitarian aid must reach Gaza.

Germany is a staunch ally of Israel and has repeatedly expressed its solidarity with the country in its war against Hamas. But it has pressed for better aid supplies and for an eventual two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“More humanitarian aid must reach Gaza and that is our clear call to Israel, which has every right to defend itself against Hamas,” Scholz said Monday at a news conference with Malaysia's prime minister.

He added that “we don't think a ground offensive on Rafah is right.”

The German leader said that “an important step now would be a cease-fire that lasts longer, ideally during Ramadan already.”

The United States, Qatar and Egypt had hoped to broker a cease-fire ahead of Ramadan that would include the release of dozens of Israeli hostages and Palestinian prisoners, and the entry of a large amount of humanitarian aid, but the talks have stalled.

UN CHIEFS CALLS ON ISRAEL AND HAMAS TO SILENCE THE GUNS'

United Nations – The United Nations chief is urging Israel and Hamas to honor the spirit of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan by “silencing the guns” and to show compassion by releasing all hostages seized by the militant group during its attack in southern Israel on Oct. 7.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told reporters that Monday marks the start of Ramadan when “Muslims around the world celebrate and spread the values of peace, reconciliation and solidarity.”

Yet, in Gaza, “the killing, bombing and bloodshed continue,” he said, with civilian killings and destruction in the territory “at a level that is unprecedented” in his more than seven years as secretary-general.

He warned that Israel's threatened assault on the southern city of Rafah where over a million Palestinians have sought safety “could plummet the people of Gaza into an even deeper circle of hell.”

Guterres said life-saving humanitarian assistance is only entering Gaza “in trickles,” and in the Ramadan spirit he also called for the removal of all obstacles so food and other aid can be delivered with speed and on a massive scale.

“The eyes of the world are watching. The eyes of history are watching. We cannot look away,” said the U.N. chief, who has been calling for a humanitarian cease-fire for months. “We must act to avoid more preventable deaths. … Desperate civilians need action – immediate action.”

Discover the complete story of India's general elections on our exclusive Elections Product! Access all the content absolutely free on the HT App. Download now!

Get Latest World News, along with Latest News from India at Hindustan Times.
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Sunday, April 21, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On