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Most Britons back immediate ceasefire in Gaza, Israeli arms embargo: Poll

London, United Kingdom – More than 70 percent of British people support an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, a new survey indicates as pressure rises on the government to adopt a firmer stance against Israel.

Among those who voted for the governing Conservative Party in 2019, 67 percent backed an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, according to the poll commissioned by Medical Aid for Palestinians and the Council for Arab-British Understanding.

Eighty-six percent of Labour voters backed the call while only 8 percent of respondents said there should not be a ceasefire. The United Kingdom has so far refused to call for a ceasefire.

Israel’s ‘massacre’ in Gaza a critical test for international justice system

Tamer Qarmout from the Doha Institute for Graduate Studies says the genocide case at the UN’s International Court of Justice against Israel has repercussions far beyond the war on Gaza.

“The international justice system is under huge pressure, and it has to deliver on this in an objective way. It is at a critical stage now. Not just the ICJ, but also the International Criminal Court [ICC]. The prosecutor, Karim Khan, he disappeared from the scene. The ICC has been absent.”

He said the case against Israel raises a significant question: “Where does international justice go?”

“The international legal system, it’s legitimacy is being eroded now for failing to stop this massacre that’s been going on for seven months now. If it fails to stop being politicized, then it’s going to collapse,” Qarmout said.

The entire UN needs to be reformed. Or maybe the Global South can start a new version of the UN. The political side is corrupt, not united at all.

Around the Network

Israeli military says bodies of three captives killed on October 7 recovered

Israeli military spokesman Daniel Hagari says the bodies of three captives killed during the October 7 attacks by Palestinian armed groups have been recovered from the Gaza Strip.

The bodies of the three – identified as Itzhak Gelerenter, Amit Buskila and Shani Louk – were found during an operation by the military and Shin Bet.

‘We will return all hostages,’ Netanyahu promises after three found killed

Netanyahu says he and his wife are grieving the news that the bodies of three captives killed on October 7 have been found in Gaza. He also congratulated soldiers for “determined action” to bring their bodies home.

“We will return all hostages, living and dead alike,” he said in a statement.

The Israeli military said the three were killed by Hamas while fleeing the Supernova music festival in southern Israel and their bodies were taken into Gaza.

Why would they take dead bodies? Doesn't make sense. More likely they were killed in a bombardment of Gaza, but Israel can't admit to that of course.

Israeli far right sees victory as ‘ultimate annihilation of Gaza’

Israel’s war on Gaza rages on with the death toll at more than 35,000 Palestinians and climbing.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government is facing growing internal friction over the way forward in the war. Many of the coalition’s far-right members have urged the prime minister to ignore growing international pressure to rein in Israel’s onslaught on the territory.

Tensions are also rising among the Israeli public with citizens taking to the streets to protest against Netanyahu’s policies and demand his resignation.

Israeli military confirms soldier killed in north Gaza

The Israeli military says in a short statement that a 20-year-old soldier from the Paratroopers Brigade was killed in fighting in northern Gaza today. He was named as Sergeant Ben Avishay, and no further details were provided about his death.

Intense fighting is ongoign in Jabalia in northern Gaza, where the Israeli military has launched another ground offensive on the area with the most urgent need for humanitarian assistance.

Yemen’s Houthis release video of downing of US drone

The Houthis in Yemen have released a video that shows how they tracked a US MQ-9 Reaper attack and surveillance drone and shot it down with a missile.

This is the fourth US drone shot down over or near Yemen since the start of the war on Gaza. A third was downed in late April.

The advanced US drones reportedly cost more than $30m.

Houthis say ‘millions’ more march in weekly pro-Palestinian rally

Media organisations run by the Houthis in Yemen released images and video of people turning up for weekly demonstrations at the main square in capital Sanaa.

The marches are aimed at expressing solidarity with Palestinians and backing attacks by the Yemeni group on commercial and military vessels in the Red Sea and beyond to oppose the war on Gaza.

‘From Yemen, our respect to you’: Houthis to Western university protesters

During pro-Palestine Houthi-organised marches earlier in Yemen’s Sanaa, the group emphasised solidarity with students demonstrating for a ceasefire in Gaza and divestment from Israel at universities across the US and Europe.

“To our free colleagues around the world, know well that you are not alone,” said Houthi member Mohamed Abdulmalik in an address to crowds of hundreds of thousands, read out in English while he wore a graduation cap and was flanked by masked armed guards.

“The massacre will continue and reach every inch of the Earth if the extremist Zionist ideology isn’t suppressed and stopped. Everyone, in the eyes of Zionism, is an enemy,” he said.

“Never retreat or surrender! The wall that protects the children and the innocent in Gaza, and the world thereafter, will crumble. You are the heroes that our children should emulate. From Yemen, our respect to you.”

UK maritime agency says incident reported northwest of Yemen’s Hodeidah

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) has issued a “transit with caution” warning after reports of an “attack” incident 76 nautical miles (about 140 km) northwest of Yemen’s port city of Hodeidah.

The agency said authorities are investigating the incident which was reported at 22:00 GMT.

Yemen’s Houthi rebels said this week that they would escalate their attacks on shipping in the Red Sea with links to Israel in retaliation for the war on Gaza.

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Air raid hits vehicle in southern Lebanon

Another suspected Israeli air raid has made an apparent assassination attempt in southern Lebanon, hitting a vehicle.

Israel assassinates Hamas official in Lebanon

The Israeli air strike in southern Lebanon reported earlier killed Sharhabil al-Sayed, a Hamas operative in charge of the group’s operations in Lebanon’s eastern Bekaa Valley.

Lebanon’s civil defence agency reported “one martyr and two wounded due to an Israeli air strike” on a vehicle in Majdal Anjar, a town close to the Syrian border 60km (37 miles) from Lebanon’s border with Israel.

News agencies cited unnamed sources as saying al-Sayed was the main target. This comes hours after other Israeli attacks killed a Hezbollah fighter and two children, according to the Lebanese armed group and official media.

Israeli military and Hezbollah claim attacks in border fighting

The Israeli military has released aerial footage of what it says is an air strike in southern Lebanon’s Deir Seryan, which it claims was used to launch a barrage of rockets at the occupied Golan Heights.

It also said a building and infrastructure belonging to Hezbollah in two other areas were struck.

Hezbollah claimed 11 attacks on Israeli positions so far, saying the latest hit military sites in Kfarchouba and the occupied Shebaa Farms.

The armed Lebanese group also released multiple videos of some of its latest attacks, saying one shows an anti-tank guided missile hitting “spy equipment” at a military site and another shows a drone assault on a military headquarters in northern Israel.

Israeli military confirms assassinating Hamas commander in Lebanon

Israel’s army released aerial footage of its air strike targeting a vehicle in southern Lebanon that killed Hamas member Sharhabil al-Sayed near the Syrian border.

The military identified al-Sayed as a top Al-Jamaa al-Islamiyya operative in Lebanon who cooperated with Hamas. The Palestinian group said he was a Hamas commander.

“[He] led and promoted many attacks and acts of terrorism from Lebanese territory against Israel in the eastern sector in recent times”, the Israeli army said.

The strike was aimed at thwarting future attacks on northern Israel, it added.

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‘Just unacceptable’: US denounces lsrael’s land closures for Gaza aid

More aid needs to flow into Gaza despite a new US-built pier off the coast becoming operational, says White House National Security communications adviser John Kirby.

He told Al Jazeera the first aid delivery was made on Thursday off the pier with 300 pallets of food, and the hope is that will triple in the coming days.

“It’s not enough getting in right now. This temporary pier is not enough all on its own to get the food, water, and medicine to the Palestinians in Gaza they so desperately need. We have to get those land crossings open as soon as possible. Clearly not enough is being done to open up the crossings. That’s just unacceptable,” said Kirby.

He noted there are aid trucks waiting at three land crossings to get into Gaza, and “the Israeli military can do that without a significant footprint”.

Yet you keep accepting it anyway by sending more weapons...

US evacuates 17 American doctors from Gaza

The United States evacuated out of Gaza 17 American doctors who were stranded since an Israeli takeover of the Rafah crossing closed the border with Egypt.

US diplomats arranged for the 17 doctors to leave instead through the Karem Abu Salem (Kerem Shalom) crossing into Israel.

“Some of the US citizen doctors who had been stuck in Gaza have now safely departed and made their way to safety with assistance from the US embassy in Jerusalem,” a State Department spokesperson said. “We have been in close contact with the groups that these US doctors are part of, and we have been in contact with the families of these US citizens.”

A source familiar with the operation told the AFP news agency three other US citizen doctors who were part of the volunteer medical mission chose to stay despite the uncertainty about when they will again have a chance to leave.

The Rafah crossing into Egypt has been the main gateway for goods and people entering Gaza. It has been closed since Israel on May 7 said seized the border post from Hamas.

Floating dock to ‘supplement land crossings, not replace them’: UN

Spokesperson Farhan Haq says the UN has agreed to help receive aid and arrange for its dispatch to Gaza from the floating dock built by the US. He said the UN will continue to work at the pier “as long as … the neutrality and independence of humanitarian operations” are respected.

Haq said aid deliveries by land remain the most effective way to combat the humanitarian crisis impacting 2.3 million people in the besieged enclave.

“Given the immense needs in Gaza, the floating dock is intended to supplement existing land crossings of aid into Gaza, including Rafah, Kerem Shalom [Karem Abu Salem] and Erez [Beit Hanoon]. It is not meant to replace any crossings,” Haq said.

Biden says 170 metric tonnes of food coming through Gaza aid pier

US President Joe Biden has confirmed that the first shipments of humanitarian aid have arrived in Gaza via a temporary US-built pier on the enclave’s coast, including enough supplies for “over 33,000 people”.

“To start, our partners at USAID are using this corridor to deliver 170 metric tons of nutrient-rich food bars to support 11,000 of the most vulnerable children and adults, ready-to-use therapeutic foods, and supplies to support shelter, clean water, and hygiene for over 33,000 people,” he wrote in a post on X.

Biden also said that the US continues to “work with Israel to further increase the amount of aid getting into Gaza by land”.

You mean to restore the amount of aid getting into Gaza by land, then increase. 170 metric tons is only 9 to 11 trucks. Biden promised 90 to 150 trucks daily from the pier. "The pier is expected to provide access for 90 truckloads of aid at first, increasing to 150 once it is fully operational"

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Around the Network

Police disperse sit-in at Dutch university

Footage shared online shows police starting to disperse the student sit-in in solidarity with Gaza at the University of Amsterdam. The footage shows students forming a human barrier and raising pictures of children killed in Israel’s war on Gaza as police enter the campus to disperse them.

Last week, police arrested about 140 activists as they broke up a similar pro-Palestinian encampment at the university.

Union for California graduate workers calls strike over treatment of pro-Palestinian protesters

Members of the United Auto Workers (UAW) union, which represents 48,000 graduate workers throughout the California university system, has organised a series of strikes to protest the treatment of demonstrators calling for ceasefire in Gaza.

The union called on graduate workers at the University of California (UC) at Santa Cruz to walk off the job on Monday, saying others in the system should stand ready for more strikes to be announced.

“For many months, workers across California have protested the death, destruction and human suffering in Gaza,” Rafael Jaime, president of UAW 4811, said in a video message.

“Over the last two weeks, UC has allowed appalling violence and intimidation against members of our academic community who exercised their right to protest,” said Douglas Grion Filho, another union representative.

International students risk immigration status to engage in Gaza protests

New York City – Mahmoud Khalil faced a dilemma common to international students: He was in the United States on an F-1 student visa. His ability to stay in the country hinged on his continued enrollment as a full-time student.

But participating in a protest – including the encampment that cropped up on Columbia’s lawn last month supporting an end to the Gaza war – meant risking suspension and other punishments that could endanger his enrollment status.

The misogyny of the anti-protest

“Fat”, “ugly”, and “bitch” are just a few of the invectives hurled at female antiwar demonstrators by “counter-protesters” – a name the press has given to pro-Israel activists.

This is more than good old-fashioned sexism rearing in the heat of the moment. The female antiwar protesters have broken the unwritten rules of being a woman in the United States. They are neither on display for men nor acting like men.

Law enforcement officers arrest a protester at the University of California, Los Angeles, during a pro-Palestine protest

‘Unhinged’: Israel carrying on a second Nakba: Palestine at UN

Palestine’s envoy to the UN says an event in New York titled “1948-2024: The Ongoing Palestinian Nakba” shows the Israeli takeover of land is continuing but Palestinians are “here to stay”.

“The denial of our existence as a people continues, the denial of our rights continues, the denial of our statehood continues, but at least, Israel, unchecked and unhinged, has confessed to the Nakba it had denied so far,” Ambassador Riyad Mansour told the UN Palestinian rights committee.

“Its extremist leaders say it unequivocally, they want a second Nakba, thus confessing to the first. A second Nakba that allows them to get rid of the Palestinian people once and for all, finish the job started decades ago.”

ICC calls for ‘respect of independence and impartiality’ after US threats

The management oversight and legislative body of the International Criminal Court (ICC) has expressed concern over threats by US and Israeli officials as it ponders issuing arrest warrants for top Israeli leaders, including Netanyahu.

“The presidency regrets any attempts to undermine the court’s independence, integrity and impartiality,” the Presidency of the Assembly of States Parties said in a statement. “Some statements may constitute threats of retaliation against the court and its officials, in the event the Court exercises its judicial functions as mandated in the Rome Statute.”

The governing body said the court was established as a result of painstaking negotiations involving all member states and has a mandate to “end impunity for the most serious international crimes that threaten peace, security and the well-being of the world”.

US officials, who welcomed the ICC’s arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin after the invasion of Ukraine, have threatened ICC executives and their families with repercussions should they choose to issue arrest warrants for Israeli officials.

Not all member states, The US doesn't recognize the ICC "The US participated in the negotiations that led to the creation of the court. However, in 1998 the US was one of only seven countries - along with China, Iraq, Israel, Libya, Qatar, and Yemen - that voted against the Rome Statute."


UN experts decry UNRWA funding freeze despite no ties to ‘terrorism’

Dozens of countries froze funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) shortly after Israel claimed members of its staff had worked with Hamas and participated in the October 7 attacks on Israel.

Some – including the largest donor, the US – still refuse to restart payments to UNRWA, the main agency getting aid to besieged Palestinians in Gaza, “despite an independent review finding no evidence of staff ties to terrorism”, 28 UN special rapporteurs and experts said in a statement.

The experts “welcomed the review’s conclusions that UNRWA has a very developed approach to neutrality, with effective control mechanisms to address neutrality concerns”. “This indicates that UNRWA has yet again been targeted politically at critical moments – raising serious questions about accountability for the damage inflicted both on UNRWA and on the Palestinians in Gaza that the agency serves,” the experts said.

Incidentally, about the same amount the floating pier cost to build is what the US normally contributes to UNWRA. UNWRA can do a lot more with that 320 million dollars though.

MEP calls on Irish government to suspend US military flights

Clare Daly, a left-wing Irish member of the European Parliament, says the Irish government should suspend US military flights passing through Shannon in County Clare to stop the killing in Gaza.

The lawmaker, an outspoken backer of a Gaza ceasefire, writes the Irish government missed its chance during conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Ukraine.

“For god’s sake, can they finally do it during the Gaza genocide?”

The US military has been sending major shipments of arms to Israel for the war on Gaza, which has killed more than 35,000 Palestinians, mostly women and children.

UN aid chief says ‘world has lost its way’ as people in Gaza suffer

Martin Griffiths, the UN’s undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs, says all predictions about the catastrophic consequences of an Israeli ground invasion of Rafah are “coming true”.

In a post on social media, Griffiths – who has long warned of the fallout should Rafah’s population of displaced people face a military onslaught – said there is “almost no food left and humanitarian efforts are stuck”.

“The world has lost its way and needs to return to the norms we created,” he said. In an interview with the Reuters news agency, Griffiths said famine in Gaza was an “immediate, clear and present danger”. “Facts on the ground tell us we don’t need to be scientists to see the consequence of the removal of food,” he said.

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Israeli warplanes bomb Jenin in occupied West Bank

The Israeli military launched an air strike on the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank.

Our Al Jazeera Arabic colleagues on the ground report a commander with the Jenin Brigades, the cross-factional Palestinian armed resistance group based in the camp, was killed in the attack.

The Palestinian health ministry said in a statement two people were also injured, describing their condition as stable.

Palestinian child shot in occupied West Bank

The incident took place during a raid by Israeli forces in the town of Beit Ummar, Wafa news agency reports. Israeli forces fired live ammunition and tear gas against residents, it said.

Israeli incursions in the occupied West Bank have intensified since the war on Gaza started on October 7. More than 8,700 Palestinians have been arrested over the past seven months.

Israeli forces arrest Gaza workers during West Bank raids

The Israeli military has arrested workers from Gaza in the town of Barta’a, south of Jenin in the occupied West Bank, the Wafa news agency reports. The men were “severely beaten” during their arrest inside a residential building, according to Wafa.

Israeli raids have been reported in other locations across the occupied West Bank, including:

  • The town of Hableh, south of Qalqilya
  • The town of az-Zawiya, west of Salfit
  • A man was injured by shrapnel after Israeli forces stormed the village of Urif, south of Nablus
  • Israeli forces were targeted with a homemade explosive device during their storming of the town of Burqa, northwest of Nablus

Israeli warplane and helicopter launched missile strikes on Jenin: Military

Israel’s military has confirmed that a fighter jet and a military helicopter took part in the missile attack on Jenin refugee camp, in the occupied West Bank, which killed one person and injured eight others.

The deceased was identified as Islam Khamaysa, a reported commander with the Jenin Brigades – a cross-factional Palestinian armed resistance group based in the camp. Israel’s military released grainy, night-vision footage of the air strike, which appeared to involve two missiles fired at a building in the densely populated refugee camp.

According to the military, Israel’s domestic security service, the Shin Bet, provided “intelligence guidance” for the air strike on the refugee camp. The slain Palestinian fighter was responsible for several attacks, it added.

Translation: Israeli bombing targets Jenin camp in the West Bank.

At least 505 people killed in Jenin area since October

The target of an Israeli strike in the Jenin refugee camp appears to be an armed fighter. We know that at least one person was killed and eight others injured. The target has been identified by locals in the area as a fighter named Islam Khamaysa from the Jenin battalion, the military wing of Islamic Jihad, who was wanted by the Israeli military.

The house that was hit was in the centre of this very densely populated camp. All those inside are thought to have been Palestinian resistance fighters. Videos show ambulances rushing to the scene and people being brought to the hospital. They show the deceased on a gurney as well.

Drones and jets have been used increasingly as part of Israel’s military operations in the occupied West Bank, with this at least the third airstrike in the last several months, including one in October.

The Jenin area has had the highest number of Palestinians killed in the occupied West Bank since the war on Gaza began with 505.

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Report: Truce negotiations ‘have been stopped’

Unnamed sources familiar with the situation tell Israel’s Kan News the negotiations on a ceasefire and captive-prisoner swap between Hamas and Israel “have been stopped”.

The main sticking point was the cessation of the war in exchange for the release of captives, it said.

“The sources said the gaps between the parties are very large with an emphasis on the definition of the term ‘end of the war’, and the Israeli demand for a veto on the names of ‘terrorists’ that Hamas wants released,” said the news report.

Qassam Brigades ‘prepared for a long battle of attrition’

The spokesman for the armed wing of Hamas says in a video message that Palestinians will continue to stand up to the ground invasion of Rafah and other places in Gaza “no matter how long the aggression lasts and regardless of its form”.

“Despite our full desire to stop the aggression against our people, we are prepared for a long battle of attrition against the enemy, dragging them into a swamp where they will gain nothing but the death of their soldiers and the capture of their officers,” said Abu Obeida.

“This is not because we are a great power, but because we are the people of this land and rightful owners.”

The spokesman said Hamas has targeted more than 100 Israeli armoured vehicles, including tanks, troop carriers and bulldozers, along with inflicting casualties on Israeli soldiers by blowing up tunnels, launching rockets and mortars, and through sniping and close-quarters combat.

OCHA warns that humanitarian supplies running out in Gaza

The UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has warned that “there’s almost nothing left to distribute in Gaza”.

“Water and sanitation situation is rapidly deteriorating. With supplies import blocked, people can only resort to using rubble and waste to solve sanitation needs,” OCHA said in a post on X.


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One killed in northern Gaza attack

Our colleagues at Al Jazeera Arabic report one person was also wounded when an Israeli drone fired missiles at the Faisal bin Fahd School, west of the Jabalia refugee camp.

Israeli forces have stepped up their attacks on northern Gaza in recent days, displacing more than 100,000 people, according to United Nations figures.

Israeli military expanding Rafah operation to west of war-torn city

We are seeing more people forced to flee the city of Rafah. We are looking at 630,000 people who have already been forced into fleeing that city and into the central part of the Strip.

The Israeli military, in a statement, talked about controlling, effectively right now, half of the distance of the Philadelphia Corridor [ a 14km or 8.7-mile-long strip of land that represents the entirety of the border area between Gaza and Egypt] … and they are only about 5km [3 miles] away from the coastal road.

That means an expansion of their military operation. Their manoeuvres will include the western part of Rafah, where there are thousands of Palestinians – displaced families – sheltering there since the initial weeks of the war.

That means we are going to be seeing way more waves of people fleeing the western part of the city. They are being forced into more displacement to the central area of Gaza, mainly in Deir el-Balah.

Video shows hardship of people displaced as Israel attacks Rafah

Human Rights Watch’s Emina Cerimovic, associate director of disability rights for the New York-based organisation, has shared a video showing the dire conditions Palestinians face after their forced displacement from Rafah.

The short video clip was sent to Cerimovic by Rajab, a 49-year-old physically disabled Palestinian man and father of seven, shows families trying to build temporary shelters on Gaza’s windswept coast.

Rajab told Cerimovic that he has now been displaced eight times in his search for safety as Israel presses on with its war in the Palestinian territory. “I am very tired and exhausted due to the suffering, displacement, exhaustion, exhaustion, thinking, and escaping death,” he told Cerimovic.

Palestinians killed and injured as Israeli drones, fighter jets, artillery pound Jabalia

Artillery shelling of the Jabalia refugee camp was continuous throughout the night, our colleagues at Al Jazeera Arabic report, while a drone attack and missiles fired by jet fighters killed at least five people and injured others in two separate raids on the Jabalia area.

Several missiles were also fired towards the Faisal bin Fahd School, located west of the camp, which killed one person and injured others.

Southern Gaza also came under attack with reports of two killed and several wounded following strikes on houses in central Rafah and the Ma’an areas of Khan Younis.

Number of child deaths as starvation grips Gaza likely ‘tip of the iceberg’: Analyst

Alexandra Saieh, head of humanitarian policy and advocacy at Save the Children International, said the official number of children who have died of malnutrition amid a growing famine in Gaza likely under-represents the true scale of tragedy.

“Back in March, the UN warned that famine was looming in Gaza. Over the last couple of months, we have not seen aid agencies granted the humanitarian access to stave off that famine,” Saieh told Al Jazeera.

“We’ve seen at least 28 children die of malnutrition and disease and we know that is probably the tip of the iceberg. These are the children that managed to get to medical facilities,” Saieh said.

“The hospital system in Gaza has all but collapsed. We have paediatricians in field hospitals in Gaza who said that they are seeing cases of malnutrition. They are seeing hepatitis, jaundice, gastroenteritis. These are horrific challenges facing children. And we just do not have supplies or enough personnel to deal with this.

Last edited by SvennoJ - on 18 May 2024