US seeks UN backing for Gaza ceasefire deal, pressuring Israel and Hamas to accept proposal

US seeks UN backing for Gaza ceasefire deal, pressuring Israel and Hamas to accept proposal
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The US said on Monday it wants the United Nations Security Council to adopt a resolution backing the proposal outlined by President Joe Biden to end the war on the Gaza Strip.

It circulated a one-page draft text, seen by Reuters, to the 15-member council. A resolution needs at least nine votes in favour and no vetoes by the US, France, Britain, China or Russia to pass.

The draft calls on Hamas to accept the deal and "fully and implement its terms without delay and without condition." It also "stresses the importance of the parties adhering to the terms of the deal once agreed, with the aim of bringing about a permanent cessation of hostilities."

The Palestinian group had already responded positively to the deal, which was in line with previous proposals it had put forward to mediators.

In Israel, however, several members of the war cabinet had voiced staunch opposition to ending the war on Gaza.

Israel's eight-month offensive on the Gaza Strip has killed over 36,000 people, most of them women and children, and thousands more are believed to be buried beneath the rubble. The war has led to one of the world's worst humanitarian catastrophes.

Hezbollah fighter killed in Israeli strike on south Lebanon
5:00 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Hezbollah said Tuesday one of it fighters was killed in south Lebanon as Israel claimed strikes in the border area, the latest deadly violence as clashes across the frontier heat up.

A "strike targeting a motorcycle in Naqoura killed one person and wounded another", Lebanon's National News Agency (NNA) said, after earlier reporting an "enemy drone strike" in the area.

Lebanon's Iran-backed Hezbollah said a member who lived in Naqoura was killed, and that its fighters launched "a slew of explosive-laden drones" at Israeli positions in the annexed Golan Heights in retaliation for the attack on the coastal town.

It also claimed other attacks on Israeli troops and positions on Tuesday.

The Israeli army said in a statement that "fighter jets struck a Hezbollah terrorist" in the Naqoura area, as well as hitting other sites.

Tumult in French parliament over Palestinian flag
4:52 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The French parliament erupted in tumult on Tuesday as a hard-left lawmaker stood up with a Palestinian flag, a week after another deputy was temporarily suspended for doing so.

Rachel Keke, a member of parliament for the France Unbowed (LFI) party from the Paris region, brandished the flag at the start of a session of questions to government in the lower house.

She stood up amid a flood of Green, Communist and LFI lawmakers who had dressed in green, white, red and black for the occasion and arranged their seating so that from afar they looked like the Palestinian flag.

"No, no, no, no, no," said Parliament Speaker Yael Braun-Pivet. "I thought things were very clear and that you had, like everyone else, been able to read our rules," she said, calling for Keke to be sanctioned and temporarily suspending the session.

Slovenia lawmakers vote on recognition of Palestinian state
4:46 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Slovenia's lawmakers on Tuesday convened for a vote on the recognition of a Palestinian state.

The government endorsed a motion last week to recognize a Palestinian state, and sent the proposal to parliament for final approval, which is needed for the decision to take effect.

"We started talking with our allies about the recognition of Palestine in February this year," Prime Minister Robert Golob told lawmakers. "At the time, the assessment was — the time is not yet ripe ... we warned that we, Europe, have a ... duty to act."

The ruling coalition led by Golob holds a comfortable majority in Slovenia’s 90-member assembly and the vote is expected to be a formality.

 

Israeli military: Ground operation under way in central Gaza
4:43 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

he Israeli military said on Tuesday that ground forces were operating in the area of Bureij in the central Gaza Strip while fighter jets struck what they say were "Hamas targets" from the air.

Macron tells Netanyahu Palestinian Auth. should govern Gaza
3:30 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

France's President Emmanuel Macron Tuesday told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the Palestinian Authority should "ensure the governance" of the Gaza Strip, the presidential office said.

"Gaza must be an integral part of a future Palestinian state and a reformed and reinforced Palestinian Authority, with the help of the international community, should ensure its governance," Macron said in phone talks, backing US President Joe Biden's proposal for a Gaza ceasefire and hostage release deal.

'Gaza war impact ripples through neighbours' health systems'
3:29 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Healthcare systems of neighbouring countries are feeling the strain as thousands of critical patients from the Gaza Strip are evacuated for treatment of complex injuries and ailments, a top WHO official said on Tuesday.

"The ripple effect on Egypt, Lebanon, Syria as the immediate neighbours of the OPT (occupied Palestinian territories) is significant," said Hanan Balkhy, the World Health Organization's regional director for the Eastern Mediterranean.

"Egypt has been hosting a significant number of the patients, but the needs are between minimum 7,000 to over 11,000 patients that require evacuation and treatment and support," she said at a briefing with journalists. "And they require it in specialized hospitals."

This has caused pressure on "already fragile health systems in the neighbouring countries."

World Central Kitchen says supplied 50 mln meals in Gaza
3:28 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

World Central Kitchen has delivered more than 50 million meals in Gaza, the aid group said on Tuesday, after suspending operations in April when seven of its workers were killed by an Israeli strike.

The aid group said it now has two main kitchens in operation in Gaza, and another 65 community kitchens spread throughout the small seaside enclave. "We're always looking to expand as much as possible," John Torpey, the group's Middle East activation manager, said.

Biden, in Time interview, hints Netanyahu prolonging war
3:25 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

US President Joe Biden swiped at Benjamin Netanyahu in an interview with Time magazine published Tuesday, saying there was "every reason" to conclude the Israeli prime minister was dragging out the Gaza war to save himself politically.

Biden added that he had a "major disagreement" with Netanyahu over the post-conflict future of Gaza, and said Israel had engaged in "inappropriate" conduct during the war sparked by Hamas' October 7 attack.

Speaking to Time days before his announcement of an Israeli proposal for a Gaza ceasefire deal that Netanyahu greeted coolly, Biden was asked if he believed the Israeli was dragging out the war for political self-preservation.

"There is every reason for people to draw that conclusion," Biden replied.

S.African charged in fatal attack on pro-Palestinian family
1:47 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

A South African man appeared in court on Tuesday accused of stabbing to death a mother and of wounding her husband and son because of the family's pro-Palestinian views.

Grayson Beare, 44, is charged with murder and two counts of attempted murder over the attack, which took place on Sunday in a suburb of the eastern city of Durban, prosecutors said.

"The woman died, and her family members, who were also allegedly stabbed multiple times, were seriously injured," said Natasha Ramkisson-Kara, a spokeswoman for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA).

Detectives initially said the motive of the violence was not clear. But a 10-year-old survivor - understood to be the woman's daughter - told investigators that "the suspect stated that he was stabbing them because they supported Palestine."

Hamas criticises Western pressure to accept Biden Gaza deal
1:45 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Senior Hamas official Sami Abu Zuhri said on Tuesday the Palestinian group frowns upon Washington and the West's calls for it to accept U.S. President Joe Biden's proposal on Gaza "as if it is Hamas who is hampering the deal".

In comments reported by Hamas media, Abu Zuhri said Israel is not serious about reaching a deal in Gaza and is still maneuvering under the U.S.' cover.

Standards of war brutally violated in Gaza: UN rights chief
1:09 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

United Nations rights chief Volker Turk said on Tuesday the norms and standards on conduct of war had been violated brutally in Gaza.

Speaking in Malaysia, Turk welcomed a U.S.-proposed ceasefire deal for the conflict, calling the Gaza situation "beyond catastrophic". 

Children unfed all day, 1000s for one toilet in Gaza: Oxfam
1:07 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Palestinians displaced by the Gaza war are living in "appalling" conditions, with children sometimes going for a whole day without food and thousands sharing the same toilet, Oxfam warned on Tuesday.

Oxfam said more than two-thirds of Gaza's population is estimated to be crammed into less than a fifth of the besieged territory.

"Despite Israeli assurances that full support would be provided for people fleeing, most of Gaza has been deprived of humanitarian aid, as famine inches closer," the aid agency said.

"A food survey by aid agencies in May found that 85 percent of children did not eat for a whole day at least once in the three days before the survey was conducted," it added.

Hezbollah 'ready for war' if Israel escalates in Lebanon
1:02 PM
The New Arab Staff

Deputy head of Hezbollah, Naim Qassem, said that the group decided not to widen the war with Israel, "but will fight if it is imposed on us," in comments made to Al Jazeera on Tuesday.

Any Israeli escalation in Lebanon "will be met with ruin, destruction, and displacement in Israel," he said.

Cross-border attacks between Hezbollah in south Lebanon and the Israeli military have intensified in recent days.

Netanyahu's biggest coalition partner backs prospective deal
12:57 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's biggest coalition partner said on Tuesday it would lend "full support" for a prospective deal to free hostages from Hamas captivity even if that would entails "far-reaching steps" in Gaza war strategy.

The statement by Shas, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish party that wields 11 of parliament's 120 seats, followed open opposition to such a deal by two far-right coalition partners.

Iran acting FM discusses Gaza war with Hezbollah chief
12:11 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Iran's acting foreign minister Ali Bagheri discussed "proposed solutions" for ending the Gaza war with Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah on Tuesday, the Iran-backed Lebanese militant group said.

The two men "reviewed the latest regional political and security developments, especially on the Gaza and Lebanon fronts, and the proposed solutions," a Hezbollah statement said.

Bagheri was due to hold talks in Damascus later Tuesday with his Syrian counterpart Faisal Mekdad and President Bashar al-Assad.

Iran's Tasnim news agency said Bagheri "talked with the leaders of the Palestinian resistance groups in Syria" at the Iranian embassy in Damascus.

Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah [Getty/file photo]
UN rights chief expresses support for US-proposed Gaza deal
12:10 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

United Nations human rights chief Volker Turk on Tuesday expressed his support for a U.S.-proposed ceasefire deal for the war on Gaza, describing the situation in the Palestinian territory as "beyond catastrophic".

Turk said norms and standards on the conduct of war had been brutally violated in Gaza, and any initiative that can lead to an end in hostilities was welcomed.

"We can only hope that is achieved because of the humanitarian situation ... we don't even know how to describe it anymore. It is beyond precarious. It is beyond catastrophic," Turk told a press conference at the end of a two-day visit to Malaysia.

Qatar urges clear positions from both parties for Gaza deal
12:09 PM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Qatar stressed on Tuesday that there should be a clear position from both parties to reach a ceasefire deal in Gaza.

"We are waiting for a clear Israeli position that represents the entire government in response to the U.S.'s Gaza proposal," Qatari foreign ministry spokesperson Majed Al-Ansari added.

UN decries 'unfathomable' numbers killed in West Bank
10:29 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The UN rights chief demanded Tuesday an end to surging violence in the occupied West Bank, saying it was "unfathomable" that more than 500 Palestinians had been killed there since October 7.

Volker Turk said at least 505 Palestinians had been killed in the West Bank by the Israeli military and Israeli Jewish settlers since the war in nearby Gaza erupted nearly eight months ago.

Palestinian officials have given a toll of at least 523.

Gaza death toll reaches 36,550: health ministry
10:26 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The Gaza Strip's health ministry said Tuesday that at least 36,550 people have been killed in the territory during nearly eight months of Israel's air and ground offensive.

The toll includes at least 71 deaths over the past 24 hours, a ministry statement said, adding that 82,959 people have been wounded in the Gaza Strip since the war began on October 7.

Israel claims foiling Hamas plot directed from Turkey
10:21 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The Israeli Shin Ben security agency claimed Monday that it had foiled a recent attempt by Hamas to carry out a suicide bombing in Israel, directed by members of the group who were based in Turkey.

Pro-Palestinian protesters set up encampment in Los Angeles
10:17 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

About 50 protesters with 20 tents were seen lined up on the sidewalks outside the building at Main and First streets, KABC-TV reported . Several tents had Palestinian flags and phrases such as "Free Palestine" and "Free Gaza."

The Los Angeles Police Department on X said it was monitoring the non-permitted demonstration and urged people to keep an eye out for others on the street.

The police department went on an area-wide tactical alert out of an abundance of caution.

There were videos saying that the police tried clearing the encampment, tearing up tents and threatening to make arrests.

Houthis say they targeted 'military site' in Israel's Eilat
9:20 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Yemen's Houthis say they targeted a military site on Israel's port city of Eilat with a new ballistic missile, the Iranian-backed group's military spokesperson Yahya Saree said on Monday.

The group targeted the military site "with a ballistic missile 'Palestine' that is being revealed today for the first time, and the operation has successfully achieved its objective," Saree said in a televised address. 

The Houthi group, which controls the most populous parts of Yemen, has attacked ships off its coast for months, saying it is acting in solidarity with Palestinians fighting Israel in Gaza.

Forest fires blaze in northern Israel by Hezbollah rockets
8:41 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israeli authorities were battling intense forest fires Tuesday in the north of the country that broke out shortly after rocket and drone strikes from Hezbollah in neighbouring Lebanon, forcing the partial evacuation of one town.

"Firefighting units, assisted by various entities, are working to extinguish the fires," Israeli police said in a statement, adding that several homes in Kiryat Shmona had been evacuated.

The Israeli army said it had deployed reinforcements to support firefighters overwhelmed by the scale of the fires.

Israel denies Netanyahu to address US Congress over Shavuot
8:40 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office on Tuesday denied American media reports that he will address the US Congress on June 13, amid mounting pressure to agree to a ceasefire with Hamas.

Netanyahu's office told Israeli media the date of his speech to Congress had "not been finalised", but it would not be on June 13 because it interferes with Shavuot, a Jewish holiday.

The date had been reported by Punchbowl News and Politico.

Japan's Nagasaki holds off inviting Israel to peace ceremony
8:36 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The Israeli ambassador to Japan has not yet been invited to Nagasaki's annual peace ceremony, said city officials who instead sent the embassy a letter calling for a Gaza ceasefire.

The city in southern Japan this week invited dozens of countries and territories to the August 9 event on the anniversary of the US nuclear attack in 1945 that killed 74,000 people.

But "as for Israel, the situation is changing day by day... so we have put sending an invitation letter on hold," mayor Shiro Suzuki told reporters on Monday.

Worries that protests could disrupt the memorial for atomic bomb victims are partly behind the decision, said Suzuki.

"Given the critical humanitarian situation in Gaza, and public opinion in the international community, there are concerns about the risk of unexpected incidents during the ceremony," which should be "safe and smooth".

Police arrest pro-Palestinian demonstrators in San Francisco
8:35 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

San Francisco police were arresting pro-Palestinian demonstrators who occupied a building that houses the Israeli Consulate for several hours Monday.

It was not immediately clear how many arrests were made but an Associated Press journalists saw police arresting two people.

Consul General of Israel to the Pacific Northwest Marco Sermoneta said the protesters arrived around 9 a.m. at the Financial District’s high-rise but didn’t enter the consulate’s offices. He said his office was telling people that they might need to change their appointments.

Palestinians seek to join Gaza genocide case at ICJ
8:33 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Palestinian authorities have filed an application with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to join South Africa as a party in its Gaza genocide case against Israel, the court said on Monday.

In a statement, the ICJ said the Palestinian authorities "filed ... an application for permission to intervene and a declaration of intervention in the (South Africa v. Israel) case."

If granted by the court, the request could allow the Palestinian authorities to also add an ad hoc judge of their choosing to the ICJ panel which currently has 16 judges, 15 of the court's regular judges and one Israeli ad hoc judge.

South Africa and Israel have been invited to furnish written observations on the Palestinian application for permission to intervene as a party.

G7 endorses Gaza ceasefire deal, calls on Hamas to accept
8:30 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

The G7 group of developed countries on Monday said it stood behind a Gaza ceasefire deal endorsed by US President Joe Biden, and called on Hamas to accept it.

"We, the Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7), fully endorse" the truce plan "that would lead to an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, the release of all hostages, a significant and sustained increase in humanitarian assistance for distribution throughout Gaza, and an enduring end to the crisis, with Israel's security interests and Gazan civilian safety assured," read the statement.

"We call on Hamas to accept this deal, that Israel is ready to move forward with, and we urge countries with influence over Hamas to help ensure that it does so," it continued.

Hamas blames Israel for being an obstacle to the deal.

Israel says more than a third of Gaza hostages are dead
8:23 AM
The New Arab Staff & Agencies

Israel believes that more than a third of the remaining Gaza hostages are dead, a government tally showed on Tuesday, after another four captives were announced dead on Monday.

The government tally said 120 remain in captivity, 43 of whom have been declared dead in absentia by Israeli officials based on various sources of information, including intelligence tip-offs, CCTV or bystander videos and forensic analysis.

Some officials have privately said that the number of dead could be higher.

Of about 250 people taken to the Gaza Strip by Hamas-led gunmen during the October 7 cross-border attack, scores were freed in a November truce, while others have been recovered - dead or alive - by Israeli troops. Several were shot dead by Israeli forces.

 

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