Death Toll in Gaza Rises; Hamas Attacks Evacuation Corridor
World Leaders Calling for Hamas Destruction
World leaders called for Hamas to be removed from power, as death tolls rise to massive casualty counts within the enclave. Humanitarian efforts have been obstructed, as Hamas has attacked humanitarian corridors. A closer look…
Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken reiterated Israel's right to defend itself from Hamas while emphasizing the importance of protecting Palestinian civilians during its military campaign, The New York Times reported. The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza has stated its estimates of civilian deaths are nearing 10,000.
Meanwhile, Israel has addressed public outcry, stating that it would agree to no ceasefire until hostages were returned. Fighting remains intense on the line, as Hamas directly attacked IDF combatants opening an evacuation corridor in north Gaza The Times of Israel reported. IDF soldiers stated that Hamas militants charged troops working to open a corridor for the removal of civilians from the fighting line.
In a statement, Blinken highlighted the need to prioritize the well-being of innocent Palestinians to prevent further humanitarian catastrophe and to ensure lasting peace in the region.
"We need to do more to protect Palestinian civilians. We've been clear that as Israel conducts this campaign to defeat Hamas, how it does so matters," Blinken stated. "It matters because it's the right and lawful thing to do. It matters because failure to do so plays into the hands of Hamas and other terror groups."
Blinken condemned Hamas for its inhuman tactics of using innocent Palestinians as human shields:
"Hamas doesn't care one second or one iota for the welfare, for the well-being of the Palestinian people. It cynically and monstrously uses them as human shields, putting its commanders and command posts, its weapons and ammunition within or beneath residential buildings, schools, mosques, hospitals," he declared.
Blinken was joined in chorus by other western leaders, who agree that Hamas must be destroyed, as German Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck agreed, noting that Hamas must be destroyed because it is "destroying the Middle East peace process," The Times of Israel quoted.
While acknowledging Israel's objective to target Hamas terrorists and their infrastructure, Blinken emphasized the importance of minimizing civilian casualties. He revealed that the United States had provided Israel with advice on how to achieve its goals while minimizing harm to innocent Palestinians.
The call for the protection of Palestinian civilians came shortly after Secretary Blinken's visit to Israel, where he urged the country to pause its fighting to allow aid into Gaza. However, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that any cease-fire would be contingent on the release of Israeli hostages, which appeared to be a rebuff to Washington's appeal.
During a meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu, Blinken proposed a series of "humanitarian pauses" to facilitate the delivery of crucial supplies, including food, water, and medicine, into Gaza. He also emphasized the need for the release of more than 200 hostages abducted by Hamas.
The conflict between Israel and Hamas has led to a dire humanitarian situation in Gaza, with civilians suffering from lack of access to basic necessities. The international community has called for an immediate end to the violence and for both parties to engage in meaningful dialogue to achieve a lasting peace in the region.
Secretary Blinken's statement reaffirms the United States' commitment to Israel's security while underscoring the importance of protecting innocent Palestinian lives. As the conflict continues, the focus on safeguarding civilians and addressing their needs remains paramount in achieving a peaceful resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.