Gaza running out fuel as talks on possible hostage deal are ongoing

Gaza running out fuel as talks on possible hostage deal are ongoing
Fuel is becoming increasingly scarce in hospitals in southern Gaza, with major humanitarian organisations pleading for fuel to be allowed in.
20 min read

Hospitals in the southern Gaza Strip have only three days of fuel left due to closed border crossings, the head of the World Health Organization said Wednesday.

Despite international objections, Israel sent tanks into the overcrowded southern city of Rafah on Tuesday and seized the nearby crossing into Egypt that is the main conduit for aid into the besieged Palestinian territory.

WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said fuel that the UN health agency had expected to be allowed in on Wednesday had been blocked.

Israeli authorities control the flow of humanitarian aid into Gaza.

"The closure of the border crossing continues to prevent the UN from bringing fuel. Without fuel all humanitarian operations will stop. Border closures are also impeding delivery of humanitarian aid into Gaza," Tedros said on X, formerly Twitter.

"Hospitals in the south of Gaza only have three days of fuel left, which means services may soon come to a halt."

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Rik Peeperkorn, the WHO representative in the Palestinian territories, told a press conference that fuel was critical to aid operations.

It is mainly used to power the generators which provide hospitals with the electricity they need to operate, but is also used so humanitarians can move around, and to keep bakeries running.

"Without fuel, all humanitarian operations, including hospital operations -- they come to a halt."

Talks aimed at reaching a Gaza ceasefire-for-hostages deal are still ongoing, and Israel and Hamas are close enough to an agreement that they should be able to close the gaps, the White House said on Wednesday.

Press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on Air Force One, as President Joe Biden flew to Wisconsin, that Biden has confidence in his team helping the negotiations.

11:59 PM

TNA's live coverage concludes for today. Join us tomorrow at 08:00 GMT for the latest developments from Israel's war on Gaza.

UNRWA urges opening of crossing into Gaza
11:03 PM
The New Arab Staff

The head of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East says the remaining functional hospitals and water pumps will not be able to function unless fuel trucks are allowed into Gaza.

“The crossings must open for fuel and humanitarian supplies must start flowing back into Gaza smoothly,” Philippe Lazzarini posted on X.

Israel ‘not serious’ about reaching truce deal, says Hamas
10:37 PM
The New Arab Staff

A member of Hamas's political bureau, Izzat al-Risheq, said that Israel was using ceasefire talks as a cover to invade Rafah city and occupy its crossing with Egypt.

“Netanyahu is trying to create excuses to avoid negotiations and putting the blame on Hamas and the mediators,” al-Risheq said in a statement.

“Hamas’s acceptance of the mediators’ proposal disoriented Netanyahu and put him in trouble. Hamas is sticking to its position that it conveyed to the mediators.”

Rafah invasion may be south Gaza's famine 'tipping point'
10:25 PM
The New Arab Staff

An invasion of Rafah would send starvation-related deaths past a tipping point in central and southern Gaza, Refugees International has warned.

Click on link below for the full story.

Gaza ceasefire ‘urgently’ needed, WHO says
9:43 PM
The New Arab Staff

Head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, called for the “removal of all obstacles” in Gaza in order to provide residents with humanitarian aid.

“A ceasefire is needed urgently for the sake of humanity,” he posted on X.

Tunisia calls on ‘free world’ to unite against Gaza genocide
9:29 PM
The New Arab Staff

The Tunisian Foreign Ministry reaffirmed what it called its “unconditional support” for Palestinians, urging the international community to uphold international humanitarian law against Israel as it carries out its assault on Rafah.

“Tunisia calls upon all the free people of the world to stand united against the genocide and forced displacement being carried out by the Zionist occupation forces,” the ministry said in a statement.

“Tunisia maintains its steadfast and supportive stance with the Palestinian brothers towards establishing their sovereign State on the entire Palestinian land, with al-Quds Al-Sharif [Jerusalem] as its capital.

Empty streets and 'fear' in Gaza's Rafah since invasion
9:07 PM
The New Arab Staff

Displaced Palestinians describe life as Israeli troops enter Rafah, where hundreds of thousands had sought shelter after being displaced from northern Gaza.

Read the full story below.

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Rafah crossing closure ‘exacerbates’ dire conditions: MSF
8:58 PM
The New Arab Staff

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) called for re-opening the Rafah gate, warning the closure of the crossing between Gaza and Egypt is jeopardising the humanitarian response to the crisis.

It warned water, food and medicine in Gaza are reaching “dangerously low” levels and urged protecting civilians in Rafah.

“Everything that is vital for daily life is not entering anymore: no humanitarian aid, no medical supplies, no food, no fuel,” Aurelie Godard, MSF medical team leader in Gaza, said in a statement.

“After seven months of war, which has forced 1.7 million people to flee their homes, the decision to close this crossing further exacerbates the already dire living conditions for people trapped in Gaza.”

Israeli attacks kill, injure Palestinians across Gaza
8:42 PM
The New Arab Staff

A number of Palestinians have been killed by Israeli air raids and artillery attacks across Gaza, including in Rafah, Palestine’s Wafa news agency reports.

Seven people were killed and others injured in Israeli shelling that targeted a group of civilians near the al-Aybaki Mosque in the al-Daraj neighbourhood in eastern Gaza City, Wafa reported.

Several civilians were also killed and injured in Israeli raids that targeted a house belonging to the Radi family in the new camp west of the Nuseirat refugee camp.

US says it didn’t approve Israel’s offensive in Rafah
8:31 PM
The New Arab Staff

Asked whether Washington gave a green light to Israel’s ongoing assault on Rafah, which saw Israeli forces seize the Palestinian side of the Rafah crossing, State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said: “It did not happen with our approval.”

On Tuesday, Miller said the offensive appears to be “limited” and warned Israel against expanding it, but Israeli forces have been intensifying their attacks on Rafah.

People buried alive at al-Shifa Hospital
7:58 PM
The New Arab Staff

Motasem Salah, director of the Gaza Emergency Operations Centre, says medics recovered more than 50 bodies from the mass grave at the medical complex since Tuesday.

"There were also bodies in the reception and emergency department. Part of the department was completely demolished, and the rubble and debris were moved over the patients," Salah said in a video message.

"The bodies we found were on beds at the reception and emergency department, meaning Israel destroyed the department over the heads of sick and injured people – and they were buried alive."

3 Palestinian Islamic Jihad fighters killed in Lebanon
7:36 PM
The New Arab Staff

Palestinian Islamic Jihad says three of its fighters killed in Lebanon

The al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of the Palestinian group, has identified the fighters as Mahmoud Blawni, Ahmada Halawa and Mohamad Jawad.

It said they were killed while fighting in southern Lebanon near the Israeli border.

Washington says ‘absolutely critical’ to reopen Rafah border
7:21 PM
The New Arab Staff

State Department spokesperson Miller has stressed the need to allow fuel into Gaza via the Rafah crossing. He also noted that the Rafah crossing allows humanitarian workers in and out of Gaza.

“So it’s absolutely critical that that crossing open, that it remains open, and we’re gonna continue to press for that,” Miller said.

On Tuesday, the spokesperson said it was “legitimate” for Israel to seize the Palestinian side of the Rafah gate.

Asked today who should control the crossing, Miller said the US would like to see the Palestinian Authority in charge of it as part of a unified Palestinian government in the West Bank and Gaza.

“Now, what happens in the time between now and then ultimately is a question for Israel,” he said.

“Israel has seized that crossing. Israel is in control of it now. So, the responsibility to open that crossing and make sure that it is running effectively right now is a responsibility of the government of Israel.”

Main maternity hospital in Rafah stops admitting patients
7:09 PM
The New Arab Staff

The main maternity hospital in the Gaza Strip's crowded southern city of Rafah has stopped admitting patients, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) told Reuters.

The UNFPA told Reuters that the hospital, Emirati Maternity Hospital, had been handling some 85 births each day out of a total of 180 births in Gaza each day prior to an escalation of fighting between Hamas and Israeli troops on Rafah's outskirts.

Palestinian symbol protest clouds Eurovision contest
6:43 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Eurovision song contest organisers apologised after a Swedish singer breached a ban on political symbols by wearing a pro-Palestinian scarf as he performed.

Eric Saade, one of the opening acts for the semi-final contest on Tuesday night, proved the most controversial act of the evening, which saw Ukraine and Croatia advance to the finals.

This year's competition has faced calls for Israel to be excluded over the war in Gaza, which the organisers refused. Thousands of people are expected to attend pro-Palestinian rallies throughout the week in Malmo.

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Bernie Sanders backs US pausing arms shipment to Israel
6:25 PM
The New Arab Staff


The progressive US senator has voiced support for Biden’s decision to halt an arms shipment to Israel, calling for further moves to pressure Israel to end abuses against Palestinians.

“This must be a first step. The US must now use ALL its leverage to demand an immediate ceasefire, the end of the attacks on Rafah, and the immediate delivery of massive amounts of humanitarian aid to people living in desperation,” Sanders said in a statement.

“Our leverage is clear. Over the years, the United States has provided tens of billions of dollars in military aid to Israel. We can no longer be complicit in Netanyahu’s horrific war against the Palestinian people.”

Israel's UN envoy 'disappointed' by US arms shipment pause
6:10 PM
The New Arab Staff


Israel’s UN ambassador Gilad Erdan says he did not believe the US would stop supplying arms to Israel but called Washington’s decision to hold up some weapons shipments “very disappointing”, even frustrating.

US President Joe Biden “can’t say he is our partner in the goal to destroy Hamas [in the Gaza war] while on the other hand delay the means meant to destroy Hamas”, Erdan said in an interview on Israel’s Channel 12 News.

White House: Talks on possible Gaza hostage deal are ongoing
5:52 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Talks aimed at reaching a Gaza ceasefire-for-hostages deal are ongoing, and Israel and Hamas militants are close enough to an agreement that they should be able to close the gaps, the White House said on Wednesday.

Press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on Air Force One, as President Joe Biden flew to Wisconsin, that Biden has confidence in his team helping the negotiations.

Riot police, protesters clash at Amsterdam Gaza demo
5:43 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Dutch riot police on Wednesday clashed with pro-Palestinian protesters as officers moved in to clear barricades at the city's main university, scene of upheaval since Monday.

Local television images showed dozens of police dressed in riot gear exchanging baton blows with a group of protesters when officers started clearing out an area in front of Binnengasthuis building in the Amsterdam city centre.

Students are demanding that the University of Amsterdam sever ties with Israel over the Gaza war and are inspired by ongoing demonstrations at US campuses.

"Police are starting to clear the barricades that have been set up on the terrain," Amsterdam police said on X, formerly Twitter.

"The operation has been authorised by the mayor," they added, after the UvA laid charges including disturbing the peace and destruction of property.

Images on the local AT5 channel showed police arresting several demonstrators, numbering a few hundred, roughly pulling one off a front-end loader.

Another protester tried to stop a loader before jumping into a canal to evade police attempts at an arrest.

Images also showed police surrounding and dragging away a small but vocal group of protesters remaining on the campus, while a front-end loader was pushing material used to put up the barricades into a canal.

Protesters are waving placards saying "Free Palestine" and shouting "Shame on you" at police.

WHO spokesperson pleads for Gaza ceasefire, fuel delivery
4:56 PM
The New Arab Staff

World Health Organization spokesperson Margaret Harris has warned that the entry of humanitarian and medical supplies to Gaza has "stopped completely".

"We were expecting to have fuel delivered today. We don’t have it," she told Qatari broadcaster Al Jazeera. "So we’ve had to suspend some of our activities to the north because we want to reserve that fuel for the hospitals to ensure that they can continue their life-saving work."

She warned that the outbreak of diseases could become a "death sentence" for malnourished children across Gaza.

"We, as humans, must not let this continue. Please, please have a ceasefire now," Harris pleaded.

Lebanon body puts Israeli bombardment damage at $1.5 bln
4:46 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israeli bombardment of south Lebanon in seven months of cross-border hostilities with Hezbollah has caused more than $1.5 billion in damage, a Lebanese official said on Wednesday.

Lebanon's powerful Hezbollah movement began attacking Israel in support of ally Hamas a day after the Palestinian militant group's unprecedented October 7 attack on Israel that sparked war in the Gaza Strip.

Hezbollah has stepped up its attacks in recent weeks, while Israel's military has struck deeper into Lebanese territory, saying it has targeted fighters and "infrastructure" used by the Iran-backed group.

Lebanon's Southern Council, an official body tasked with assessing the destruction, has estimated that since October 8, the cost of "damage to buildings and institutions stands at more than one billion dollars".

Infrastructure, including water, electricity, roads and health services have also suffered damage estimated at around an additional $500 million, according to the figures provided by council chief Hashem Haidar.

The information used to make the assessment was mostly gathered by "our teams on the ground", Haidar said.

Hezbollah carries out several attacks against Israeli forces
4:18 PM
The New Arab Staff

The Lebanese group Hezbollah has launched a short-range Burkan rocket at Israel’s Biranit military base near the Lebanese border and hit it "directly", Al Jazeera has reported.

The Hassan Nasrallah-led group also said it targeted Israeli troops in the Kfar Shuba Hillso, which Lebanon claims at its own.


Israel gov't: Nothing to add to reports of US weapons halt
3:09 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

 Israel has nothing to add to reports that the United States has halted the supply of some munitions, a government spokesperson said on Wednesday.

He said he had heard the reports but added "I personally and the Israeli government do not have anything to add on these reports". 

Third mass grave found at al-Shifa Hospital
2:46 PM
The New Arab Staff

Medical teams have found a third mass grave inside Gaza City’s al-Shifa Hospital, with 49 bodies so far recovered, according to the Government Media Office in Gaza on Wednesday.

It said the team expects to find dozens more as the process of retrieving bodies continues.

The media office said there have been a total of seven mass graves found inside hospitals so far.

"We condemn in the strongest terms the crimes of genocide and the continuous killing committed by the occupation army against our Palestinian people," it said in a Telegram post.

"We hold the US administration, the international community and the occupation fully responsible for these mass graves and this blatant aggression."

South Gaza hospitals have only three days' fuel left: WHO
2:39 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Hospitals in the southern Gaza Strip have only three days of fuel left, the head of the World Health Organization said Wednesday, due to the closure of border crossings.

"The closure of the border crossing continues to prevent the UN from bringing fuel. Without fuel all humanitarian operations will stop. Border closures are also impeding delivery of humanitarian aid into Gaza. Hospitals in the south of Gaza only have three days of fuel left, which means services may soon come to a halt," Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on X, formerly Twitter.

'No aid has entered Gaza today': UNRWA
2:04 PM
The New Arab Staff

UNRWA says that no aid has been able to enter Gaza, as the Rafah crossing area has been subject to Israeli bombardment throughout the day."

"No fuel or aid has entered into #GazaStrip and this is disastrous for the humanitarian response," Scott Anderson, the director of UNRWA affairs in Gaza said in a post on X.

Israel pessimistic on Gaza talks, delegation still in Cairo
1:34 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israel sees no sign of a breakthrough in Egyptian-mediated talks on a truce with Hamas that would free some Gaza hostages, but is keeping its delegation of mid-level negotiators in Cairo for now, an Israeli official said on Wednesday.

William Burns, the director of the US Central Intelligence Agency, was in Israel meeting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about a possible suspension of the Israeli operation in Gaza's Rafah in return for a hostage release, the official added.

The US Embassy in Jerusalem had no comment on Burns' visit.

UAE condemns Israel's takeover of Rafah border crossing
1:07 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The United Arab Emirates said on Wednesday it strongly condemns Israel's takeover of the Rafah border crossing on the Palestinian side and warned of the consequences of military escalation.

Dozens detained at Paris pro-Palestinian university protest
12:33 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

French police detained 86 people following an operation to remove students staging a pro-Palestinian occupation at the Sorbonne university in Paris, prosecutors said Wednesday.

Those arrested in the police operation on Tuesday night were being held for a variety of public order offences, said the statement.

They include wilful damage, rebellion, violence against a person holding public authority, intrusion into an education establishment and holding a meeting designed to disrupt order. Some are also being held for participation in a group with a view to preparing violence or damage to property.

They can be held for an initial 24 hours, which can then be extended another 24 hours.

The day before police moved in, Prime Minister Gabriel Attal said there would never be a right to disrupt France's universities with such protests.

Police acted after about 100 students had been occupying a lecture theatre for two hours in "solidarity" with the people of Gaza, an AFP journalist on site noted.

Tuesday night's police operation at the Sorbonne -- and at another university on Paris's Left Bank, Science Po university -- followed interventions to end similar protests at the end of April.

Switzerland earmarks $11 million for UNRWA in Gaza
12:30 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Switzerland is proposing to give $11 million to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, specifically for tackling the humanitarian crisis in Gaza triggered by the war waged by Israel.

The government's proposal, announced on Wednesday after weeks of procrastination, represents half of the amount which was initially set to be paid to the UNRWA agency in 2024.

"Switzerland's 10 million Swiss francs contribution to UNRWA will be restricted to Gaza and will cover the most pressing basic needs, such as food, water, shelter, basic healthcare and logistics," a government statement said.

Switzerland "is fully aware of the critical nature of this situation and recognises the urgent need for action".

UNRWA, which coordinates nearly all aid to Gaza, has been in crisis since January when Israel accused about a dozen of its 13,000 Gaza employees of being involved in the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel.

This led many donor nations, including the United States and Switzerland, to abruptly suspend funding to the agency, threatening its efforts to deliver desperately-needed aid in Gaza, where the UN has warned of an impending famine.

Death toll in Gaza reaches 34,844: MoH
12:05 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The health ministry in Gaza said on Wednesday that at least 34,844 people have been killed in the Palestinian territory in the war waged by Israel.

The tally includes at least 55 deaths in the past 24 hours, a ministry statement said, adding that 78,404 people have been wounded in the Gaza Strip since the war broke out on October 7.

Gaza aid loading in Cyprus as US offshore jetty completed
11:43 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

 Aid for Gaza was being loaded onto a ship in Cyprus on Wednesday in what was expected to be the first cargo to be delivered using a US pier built to expedite supplies to the besieged enclave.

Containers were being stacked on the U.S. flagged Sagamore, docked at the port of Larnaca, on Wednesday. Some containers to the ship were labelled as aid from the United Arab Emirates.

Konstantinos Letymbiotis, a Cyprus government spokesperson, said a U.S jetty built to handle aid shipments to Gaza had been completed.

"We are completing the loading of aid onto a US vessel now in Larnaca and once the platform is in place this part of the process (shipment) can commence," he said.

It was unclear when the vessel would depart.

Police clear Pro-Gaza encampment at George Washington Uni
11:27 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Police began to clear a Pro-Palestinian tent encampment at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., early Wednesday, hours after dozens of protesters left the site and marched to President Ellen Granberg’s home.

"Officers gave their third and final warning to demonstrators to move at about 3:30 am., saying all who remained in U-Yard and the stretch of H Street in front of the plaza would be arrested," according to GW Hatchet, the university’s independent student-run newspaper.

University officials had warned in statements of possible suspensions for students engaging in protest activities on University Yard.

"While the university is committed to protecting students’ rights to free expression, the encampment had evolved into an unlawful activity, with participants in direct violation of multiple university policies and city regulations," the university said in a statement.

Local media had reported that some protesters were pepper sprayed as police stopped them from entering the encampment and nearly 30 people had been arrested, according to community organizers.

Tuesday evening, protesters carrying signs that read, "Free Palestine" and "Hands off Rafah", marched to Granberg’s home. Police were called to maintain the crowd. No arrests were made.

Israeli army detains dozens of Palestinians across West Bank
10:56 AM
The New Arab Staff

Israeli forces on Wednesday have detained at least 23 Palestinians from various parts of the occupied West Bank, according to security and local sources, as cited by Wafa.

Israeli forces rounded up Palestinians from Bethlehem, Hebron, Ramallah, Nablus, Tulkarm and Sair.


Several Palestinians were arrested across the West Bank on Wednesday [Getty]
Israel must comply with international law in Rafah: Moscow
10:20 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The Russian foreign ministry on Wednesday insisted that Israel strictly observe international humanitarian law after its tanks entered the border city of Rafah.

At a briefing, spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Russia sees the incursion as "an additional destabilizing factor" in an area with more than a million civilians, and therefore "we demand strict observance of the provisions of international humanitarian law," the RIA Novosti state news agency reported.

Israeli offensive in Rafah could 'break int'l law': UK
10:06 AM
The New Arab Staff

An Israeli military offensive on Rafah would break international humanitarian law, the UK's deputy foreign minister Andrew Mitchell said, but did not specify any planned British consequences if a full-scale invasion goes ahead.

The line, agreed with the US, is aimed at limiting the options of the Israeli government so that it will accept a version of the three-stage peace deal adopted by Hamas.

The UK said its aim was to secure a permanent and sustained ceasefire, and the removal of Hamas from the future governance of Gaza.

The British statement that Israel has presented no credible plan for the invasion of Rafah in southern Gaza that complies with international humanitarian law follows a similar statement by the French foreign ministry on Monday. 

Gaza truce talks resume in Cairo 'with all sides present'
9:45 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Gaza truce talks resume in Cairo 'with all sides present', Egyptian media said on Wednesday.

African Union 'firmly condemns' Israeli incursion into Rafah
9:43 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The African Union condemned Wednesday the Israeli military's moves into southern Gaza's Rafah, calling for the international community to stop "this deadly escalation" of the war.

AU Commission chief Moussa Faki Mahamat "firmly condemns the extension of this war to the Rafah crossing", said a statement after Israeli tanks captured the key corridor for humanitarian aid into the besieged Palestinian territory.

Faki "expresses his extreme concern at the war undertaken by Israel in Gaza which results, at every moment, in massive deaths and systematic destruction of the conditions of human life", the statement said.

"He calls on the entire international community to effectively coordinate collective action to stop this deadly escalation."

Seven killed in Israeli bombing of eastern Gaza City
8:56 AM
The New Arab Staff

Seven Palestinian citizens, including children, were killed at dawn on Wednesday with several others injured, the Palestinian Wafa news agency said.

Israel bombed the Al-Zaytoun neighbourhood, east of Gaza City.

Wafa said Israel targeted an apartment in a residential building owned by Al-Louh family, near Al-Falah School in Al-Zaytoun neighborhood, east of Gaza City, killing a man, his wife and their children.

He added that rescue crews were able to retrieve the slain civilians and injured and transport them to the Baptist Hospital in Gaza City.

Pro-Palestinian protesters occupy Amsterdam uni overnight
8:26 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Pro-Palestinian protesters have spent the night occupying one of the locations of the University of Amsterdam (UvA), local media reported, a day after student protesters and police clashed in the Dutch capital.

Police said in a statement that the UvA had not asked them to stop the protest contrary to Monday evening when riot police violently broke up an encampment at UvA.

UvA said in a statement just after midnight that it would like to come to a solution with the students who have been protesting since Monday, adding that the protest has 'caused considerable damage' to its buildings.

The university will keep several locations closed on Wednesday due to the blockades.

At the University of Utrecht, some 40 km (25 miles) south of Amsterdam, local police ended a pro-Palestinian demonstration at the University library, the university said in a statement.

Protesters have occupied Amsterdam University overnight [Getty]
US halts shipment of bombs for Israel over Rafah concerns
8:12 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The United States paused a shipment of bombs to Israel last week over fears it would invade the southern Gaza city of Rafah, an official said Tuesday, marking the first time in the conflict that President Joe Biden has squeezed military aid to the key US ally.

Washington halted the load of 1,800 2,000-lb (907 kg) bombs and 1,700 500-lb (226 kg) bombs after Israel had not "fully addressed" US concerns about a major ground operation, a senior administration official said.

The pausing of weapons marks the first time that Biden has acted on the warning that he gave Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in April that US policy on Gaza would depend on how Israel treated civilians.

The US official said Biden's administration made the decision on the weapons when it appeared Israel was on the verge of a major ground operation into Rafah, which Washington has strongly opposed as more than a million people are sheltering there.

Qatar urges int'l community to prevent Rafah 'genocide'
8:05 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Qatar called on the international community on Wednesday to prevent a "genocide" in Rafah following Israel's seizure of the Gaza city's crossing with Egypt and threats of a wider assault.

In a statement the Gulf state, which has been mediating between Israel and Hamas, appealed "for urgent international action to prevent the city from being invaded and a crime of genocide being committed".

Doha's Ministry of foreign affairs also said it strongly condemns Israel's Rafah incursion and called for international intervention to prevent the city from being invaded. 

Israel reopens Karem Abu Salem border crossing for Gaza aid
8:03 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israel said it reopened the Karam Abu Salem border crossing to humanitarian aid for Gaza Wednesday, four days after closing it in response to a rocket attack that killed four soldiers.

"Trucks from Egypt carrying humanitarian aid, including food, water, shelter equipment, medicine and medical equipment donated by the international community are already arriving at the crossing," the army said in a joint statement with COGAT, the defence ministry body that oversees Palestinian civil affairs.

Houthis launch three drones, no injures or damages: US
8:00 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The US military said on Tuesday that Iranian-backed Houthi militants launched three "uncrewed aerial systems" (UAS) from Yemen, but caused no injuries or damage.

A coalition ship successfully engaged one UAS, U.S. Central Command forces successfully engaged the second UAS, and the final UAS crashed in the Gulf of Aden, Central Command said in a statement