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Latest Updates on Middle East Conflict: Blinken to Advise Israel Against Rafah Actions; U.S. Proposes Ceasefire Resolution

Middle East conflict live updates: Blinken to warn Israel on Rafah plan; U.S. presents cease-fire resolution

Secretary of State Antony Blinken is scheduled to convey to Israeli officials during his visit on Friday that any military action in Rafah would be unwise. Concurrently, a resolution sponsored by the U.S. supporting an immediate cease-fire and the release of hostages is slated for a vote at the U.N. Security Council in New York.

Blinken, addressing reporters, expressed optimism regarding the progress of indirect cease-fire negotiations between Israel and Hamas, noting that the differences between the parties are gradually diminishing. His remarks were made alongside Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry.


Blinken (Credits: The Hill)

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the Director-General of the World Health Organization, reported the loss of contact with health personnel at al-Shifa Hospital in northern Gaza due to Israeli airstrikes. He voiced concerns over the inaccessibility of the hospital, highlighting reports of health workers being detained, stressing the imperative of safeguarding hospitals in compliance with international humanitarian law.

European Union leaders issued a statement advocating for an immediate humanitarian pause leading to a sustainable cease-fire. Similarly, Britain and Australia jointly called for an immediate cessation of hostilities in Gaza to facilitate aid distribution and the release of hostages, seen as crucial steps towards achieving a lasting and sustainable peace.

The Gaza Health Ministry reported that since the conflict’s onset, at least 31,988 individuals have been killed and 74,188 injured, without differentiation between civilians and combatants. Israel’s estimates indicate around 1,200 fatalities resulting from Hamas’s attack on October 7, with 251 soldiers killed since the commencement of its military operations in Gaza.

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