Biden asserts that Egypt may permit as many as twenty aid shipments into Gaza. The United States reported that Egypt agreed to reopen its border crossing with the Gaza Strip to allow aid to reach Palestinians, as anti-Israel protests erupted throughout the Middle East and the humanitarian crisis for the 2.3 million people confined in the enclave worsened.
The region remained volatile following an Israeli airstrike on the Al-Ahli al-Arabi hospital in Gaza late on Tuesday, which, according to Palestinian officials, claimed the lives of 471 individuals.
Since October 7, 3,478 Palestinians have been slain, and 12,065 have been injured in Israeli airstrikes on the besieged enclave, according to the Gaza health ministry.
Protests ensued in various Middle Eastern countries, including the Israeli-occupied Palestinian West Bank, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, and Tunisia, in response to the hospital attack, which incited widespread indignation. TV footage showed that Lebanese security forces launched tear gas and water cannons at demonstrators hurling projectiles near the US embassy in Beirut.
Palestinian officials reported that two Palestinian adolescents were fatally shot by Israeli forces in the West Bank during protests. Additionally, the Palestinian official news agency WAFA said that Israeli troops killed a Palestinian man during a raid on the West Bank village of Budrus.
Mourners attend the funerals of Palestinians slain in Israeli airstrikes. FIGURE: Reuters
President Joe Biden of the United States and President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi of Egypt spoke via telephone late on Wednesday evening as they returned from a visit to Israel lasting less than eight hours.
Biden informed reporters that Sisi had consented to reopening the Rafah crossing connecting Egypt and Gaza, allowing approximately twenty trucks transporting humanitarian aid to enter the enclave. Since Israel imposed a blockade and airstrikes on Gaza twelve days ago, the people have been left in critical need of food, water, fuel, and other necessities.
Although Biden refrained from providing an exact timeframe, John Kirby, a spokesman for US national security, anticipated that the opening would transpire in the days after road restorations.
Amid concerns that the conflict might extend beyond Gaza, Biden had made arrangements to meet with leaders of the Arab world. Due to the hospital attack, Jordan canceled his summit with Egypt and the Palestinian Authority scheduled for that location.
According to the Interfax news agency, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov emphasized that the Gaza conflict could escalate into a regional competition, and Russia communicated with Turkey.
The UN prefers 100 vehicles daily.
According to a statement by UN assistance chief Martin Griffiths to the Security Council, the organization’s objective is to restore daily aid deliveries to Gaza to the 100-truck volume before the Israel-Hamas conflict.
The White House stated that Biden was scheduled to speak at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday (0000 GMT on Friday) from the White House regarding the United States’ response to Hamas’ attacks against Israel and Russia’s war against Ukraine. British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was also scheduled to travel to Israel on Thursday.
Amidst the debris, Palestinians work at the location of an Israeli strike. Photograph by Reuters
Egypt, which previously stated that the Rafah crossing was rendered inoperable by Israeli airstrikes and not technically closed, said that Sisi and Biden had agreed to provide Gaza with aid “in a sustainable manner.” Together with international organizations, they coordinated a humanitarian effort for the United Nations.
The office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated during Biden’s visit that Israel would allow food, water, and medication to reach southern Gaza via Egypt.
To secure an Israeli commitment to alleviate the distress of civilians in the small, densely populated coastal enclave, Biden was subject to intense international pressure. He pledged $100 million in assistance from the United States to Gaza and West Bank civilians.
On CNN, Mark Negev, a Netanyahu adviser, stated that while Israel had “in principle” consented to allow aid to Gaza through Egypt, “we do not want Hamas to steal aid intended for the civilian population.” “It truly is a problem.”
Israel reaffirmed that aid would not be permitted to enter Gaza via its border crossing until Hamas released the approximately 200 captives it had seized during its cross-border assault.
Biden told reporters that he dealt directly with Israel regarding the necessity of facilitating aid to Gaza. Previously, he stated that he would request an unprecedented aid package for Israel from Congress this week; however, until the House of Representatives elects a new speaker, no action is feasible.
This photograph, captured from Sderot in southern Israel, depicts smoke billowing over the northern Gaza Strip due to the Israeli military’s merciless bombardment. A photograph by AFP
Biden emphasized that the United States would do all that could to ensure Israel’s safety and cautioned Israelis against becoming enraged, reiterating that Hamas did not affiliate with the overwhelming majority of Palestinians.
“What sets us apart from the terrorists is we believe in the fundamental dignity of every human life,” said Vice President Biden. If that were not adhered to, “then the terrorists would prevail.”
China will collaborate with Egypt to ensure stability.
Amid the Israel-Hamas conflict that casts a shadow over the region, Egyptian Prime Minister Xi Jinping was advised by Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday that their nations ought to collaborate in order to inject “more stability” into the Middle East.
Since October 7, when Hamas launched surprise attacks against Israel, the conflict has waged. As a reaction, Israel has imposed a siege on Gaza, encompassing the Palestinian enclave through a series of destructive aerial bombardments, establishing a military barrier along its frontier, and preparing troops for an anticipated ground offensive.
China consistently supported the two-state proposition throughout the decades-long impasse preceding the conflict. However, throughout its history, it has exhibited sympathy towards the Palestinian cause, albeit in support of the nationalist Palestine Liberation Organisation rather than Hamas.
According to numerous state media outlets, Xi met with Egyptian President Mostafa Madbouli in Beijing on Thursday, reiterating China’s support for a “two-state solution… to realize the peaceful coexistence of Palestine and Israel.”
“China is willing to enhance cooperation with Egypt… and inject more certainty and stability into the region and the world,” Xi said.
He added that Beijing and Cairo were both open to cooperating to “coordinately protect the interests of developing nations and international fairness and justice.”
Egypt has maintained most of its border with Gaza, where the humanitarian situation has become increasingly dire, closed since the onset of hostilities.
However, Cairo announced on Thursday that humanitarian aid would be permitted to enter the enclave via the Rafah crossing in a “sustainable” manner.
The Chinese government “appreciates the important role played by Egypt in de-escalating the situation and supports Egypt’s efforts to open humanitarian corridors”, Xi indicated to Madbouli.
“It is crucial to prevent the conflict from expanding or even losing control and causing a serious humanitarian crisis,” Xi commented.
“The top priority is to cease fire and stop war early,” he continued.
In light of the improved relations between China and Egypt in recent months, Cairo is slated to join the BRICS group of emergent economies as an official member beginning next year.
During his meeting with Madbouli, Xi stated, “China congratulates Egypt on joining the BRICS cooperation mechanism and believes that this will inject new impetus into BRICS cooperation.”
“China and Egypt are good friends who share the same goals and trust each other, and good partners who work hand-in-hand for development and common prosperity”, according to him.
“At present, the international and regional situation is undergoing profound and complex changes, and the world is experiencing rapid transformations not seen for a century,” Xi commented.
Thursday, Russia dispatched 27 tonnes of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip to facilitate the transportation of civilians from Egypt, according to the emergencies ministry of Moscow.
“A specialized aircraft has departed from the Ramenskoye airport near Moscow in the direction of El-Arish, Egypt.”
“The Egyptian Red Crescent will receive humanitarian assistance from Russia for shipment to the Gaza Strip,” said Deputy Minister Ilya Denisov.
According to Denisov, the aid consisted of “wheat, sugar, rice, and pasta.”