EU urges Arab world to contribute to ‘sustainable peace’ between Palestinians and Israel

A statement issued by the Israeli army said that medical personnel would not evacuate from al-Shif, but would continue to care for the hospital’s patients who are unable to move due to medical conditions. Also, the Israeli army stated that it provided the hospital with the necessary food, water and humanitarian aid last night.

The Hamas-controlled Ministry of Health in the Gaza Strip announced that around 450 civilians left the al-Shifa hospital complex today. The British broadcasting organization BBC reports that when leaving the hospital area, people held white flags in their hands. Currently, there are 120 patients in the hospital building, as well as the hospital director, four doctors and a small group of nurses.

Before the Israeli army launched the raid on al-Shifa Hospital, the Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry and the UN reported that 2,300 people were in the hospital, including patients, doctors and Gazans whose homes were destroyed in the bombing and who were temporarily staying in the hospital compound.

It also became known today that Israel refused the previously expressed offer by the leadership of “Hamas” to temporarily cease fire in exchange for 50 hostages.

The Israeli authorities have informed the mediator in the negotiations with “Hamas” – Qatar about their decision, the newspaper “Yediot Achronot” reports. This decision of the Israeli security cabinet can be explained by the fact that the increasing military pressure on Hamas could increase the chances of reaching an agreement more favorable to Israel.

The newspaper reports that the Israeli authorities do not want the families captured by “Hamas” to be separated and demand the release of all the mothers and their children held hostage in the Gaza Strip. The ministers emphasize that if a larger number of hostages could be released, they are ready to show flexibility in negotiations with “Hamas” and ensure more days of temporary truce.

Israeli authorities are ready to discuss the terms of an agreement under which 70-80 hostages would be released.

Meanwhile, the head of EU foreign affairs, Joseph Borrell, today participated in the conference organized by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), which takes place annually in Manama, the capital of Bahrain. The conference brings together government ministers and policy makers, as well as experts, opinion leaders and representatives of the business community to discuss the Middle East’s most pressing foreign policy, defense and security challenges.

Borel, addressing those present at the conference, stated that after the end of the war between Israel and Hamas, the administration of Gaza must not remain in the hands of the group.

“So who’s going to control Gaza? I think only the Palestinian Authority could do that. I [vakar] I was in Ramallah. They told me they were ready and willing to take on that responsibility. In fact, schools, hospitals and public services in Gaza are currently administered by the Palestinian Authority. They pay for it. And there are tens of thousands of workers there – people from the Palestinian Authority serving the people of Gaza, but they will need international support,” Borrell said.

Borel also held a meeting with Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Faisal bin Farhan al-Saud in Manama. After meeting with his Saudi counterpart, Borrell noted that Arab countries and the EU should join efforts to achieve lasting peace between the Palestinians and Israel.

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