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Israel-Hamas clash: Biden warns against fresh Palestinian casualties as Netanyahu vows to resume war with ‘full force’

The truce between Israel and Hamas entered its fifth day on Tuesday. The pause of the relentless bombing and ground offensive that Benjamin Netanyahu’s Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) on Palestine’s Gaza was extended for two more days, after the agreed upon four day truce.  Hamas fighters from Gaza have agreed to release more hostage as part of the pause, and aims to delay the expected resumption of the war. 

Meanwhile, Israel has been under growing pressure to spare Palestinian civilians when it renews its offensive. 

The hostage and prisoner release deal that was brought in place because of the truce saw 51 Israelis freed under the initial four-day truce, along with 19 hostages of other nationalities. So far, 150 Palestinians have been released from Israeli prisons. Israel has said it would extend the cease-fire by one day for every 10 additional hostages released.

The Palestinian prisoners released so far have been mostly teenagers accused of throwing stones and firebombs during confrontations with Israeli forces.

According to AP, US President Joe Biden-led administration has warned Israel against “significant further displacement” of Palestinian civilians in southern Gaza, as the world awaits an impending resumption of war. 

Israel has repeatedly vowed to resume the war with “full force” to destroy Hamas once it’s clear that no more hostages will be freed under the current agreement’s terms.

The Biden administration has told Israel it must avoid “significant further displacement” and mass casualties among Palestinian civilians if it resumes the offensive, and that it must operate with more precision in southern Gaza than it has in the north, according to US officials. 

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is set to visit the region later this week for the third time since the start of the war, and is expected to press for an extension of the truce and the release of more hostages.

Israel has vowed to end Hamas’ 16-year rule in Gaza and crush its military capabilities. That would almost certainly require expanding the ground offensive from northern Gaza — where entire residential areas have been pounded into rubble — to the south, where hundreds of thousands of displaced people have packed into overflowing United Nations shelters.

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Updated: 28 Nov 2023, 06:31 PM IST

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