A senior Israeli official has recently stated that there will be “no ceasefire” in Gaza, despite ongoing efforts by the United States and Qatar to secure the release of over 200 hostages held by Hamas. The official emphasized that humanitarian efforts should not interfere with the mission to dismantle Hamas, wrote CNN. This comes as the US government has urged Israel to delay its planned ground offensive in Gaza to allow for the release of more hostages and the delivery of aid.
US President Joe Biden spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to discuss the situation. The White House released a statement saying that the first two convoys of humanitarian assistance have crossed into Gaza and are being distributed to Palestinians in need. The statement also expressed appreciation for Israel’s support in facilitating the release of two American hostages.
National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir criticized any agreement that does not include the release of all Israeli hostages. The Prime Minister’s Office clarified that Israel will not provide any humanitarian aid to Gaza and will prevent any unsupervised supplies from entering the region.
The situation has garnered international attention, with UN agencies describing conditions in Gaza as “catastrophic” and calling for a humanitarian ceasefire, reports BBC. Meanwhile, China has also called for an immediate ceasefire, contrasting the stance of the United States and the United Kingdom, who have reaffirmed their support for Israel, wrote France 24.
In the entertainment industry, prominent Hollywood figures like Jon Stewart and Joaquin Phoenix have penned a letter to President Biden, urging him to advocate for an immediate ceasefire.
The conflict has been escalating since Hamas’s October 7 terrorist attack, which led to the capture of hostages and has severely impacted the lives of civilians in the region. The international community remains divided on the issue, and as tensions continue to rise, the prospects for a peaceful resolution seem increasingly remote.