Find here our situation update published yesterday
France, deeply concerned after the Israeli strikes in Rafah (south of the Gaza Strip), urged Israel on Sunday February 11 to stop the fighting. “A large-scale Israeli offensive in Rafah would create a catastrophic humanitarian situation of a new dimension and unjustifiable”reacted the deputy spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Christophe Lemoine. “In order to avoid disaster, we reiterate our call for an end to the fighting”he added in a communicated.
Paris recalls that “Rafah is today a place where more than 1.3 million people are taking refuge. It is also a vital crossing point for delivering humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza.”underlines the spokesperson for the Quai d’Orsay.
“In Gaza, as everywhere else, France opposes any forced displacement of populations, prohibited by international humanitarian law”commented Christophe Lemoine. “The future of the Gaza Strip and its inhabitants can only be part of a Palestinian state living in peace and security alongside Israel”he also added.
Benjamin Netanyahu persists for an offensive on Rafah
The Israeli Prime Minister persisted on Sunday in his desire to launch a military offensive against Rafah. “Victory is within reach. We are going to do it “declared Benjamin Netanyahu in an interview with the ABC News channel broadcast on Sunday, calling Rafah “last bastion” of the Islamist movement.
“Those who say that we absolutely must not enter Rafah are in reality telling us that we must lose the war, and leave Hamas there”, he said. Israel will ensure “a secure passage for the civilian population so that they can leave” the premises, he said. “We are developing a detailed system to achieve thishe added, we don’t approach this casually. » He mentioned areas north of Rafah that have been cleared and could, he said, be used as safe areas for civilians.
The fighting seemed particularly intense on Sunday a few kilometers to the north, in Khan Younes, one of the strongholds of Hamas command, where the Israeli army has been tracking its fighters for several weeks. Correspondents from Agence France-Presse (AFP) heard regular explosions, planes flying overhead and saw several plumes of black smoke escaping from the city and its surroundings.
Hamas says Rafah offensive would threaten hostage deal
Hamas warned on Sunday that an Israeli military offensive against Rafah would threaten ongoing negotiations over an exchange of hostages and Palestinians held by Israel.
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What the Israeli Prime Minister and the army “have failed to do so in more than four months, they will fail to do so no matter how long the war lasts”a Hamas official told AFP on Sunday.
The Hamas health ministry announced on Sunday a toll of 28,176 people killed, including 112 who died in the last twenty-four hours, and 67,784 people injured since the start of the war. This assessment could not be independently verified.
Iran calls to exclude Israel from UN
Iranian President Ebrahim Raïssi called on Sunday to exclude Israel from the United Nations (UN), celebrating the forty-fifth anniversary of the Islamic Revolution, marked with rallies in Tehran and major Iranian cities .
Because “What is happening in Gaza today is a crime against humanity, and the supporters of this criminal regime are the United States and certain Western countries”he said during a speech to thousands of people gathered in Azadi (“Freedom”) Square in the capital on the public holiday.
President Raïssi accused Israel of having “violated four hundred declarations, resolutions and agreements” concluded within the ” International organisations “.
A “devastating” war for the Palestinian economy, according to the IMF
The war between Israel and Hamas has ravaged the Palestinian economy in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, the managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Sunday. “The dire outlook for the Palestinian economy worsens as the conflict continues”added Kristalina Georgieva, during the world summit of governments in Dubai.
“Only lasting peace and a political solution will fundamentally change the situationshe estimated. Economically, the impact of the conflict was devastating. »
In the Gaza Strip, economic activity fell by 80% from October to December 2023 compared to the same period in 2022, according to the IMF director. In the West Bank, territory occupied by Israel since 1967, the drop was 22%, she said.