UN tells Israel it will pause aid work in Gaza without better safety

Israel has acknowledged some military strikes on humanitarian workers, including an April attack that killed seven workers with the World Central Kitchen, and denied allegations of others.
U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip.
U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip.Photo | AP

JERUSALEM: Senior U.N. officials have told Israel they will suspend aid operations across Gaza unless urgent steps are taken to better protect humanitarian workers, such as providing direct communication with Israeli forces on the ground, two U.N. officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss ongoing negotiations with Israeli officials.

Israeli military officials did not immediately respond Tuesday to a request for comment.

Israel has acknowledged some military strikes on humanitarian workers, including an April attack that killed seven workers with the World Central Kitchen, and denied allegations of others. Israel says any such strikes are mistakes.

International criticism is growing over Israel’s campaign against Hamas in the Gaza Strip as Palestinians face severe and widespread hunger. The eight-month war has largely cut off the flow of food, medicine and basic goods to Gaza, which is now totally dependent on aid. The top United Nations court has concluded there is a “plausible risk of genocide” in Gaza — a charge Israel strongly denies.

U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip.
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Earlier Tuesday, Israel’s Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for compulsory service, a landmark decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition.

Efforts to bridge the gaps between Israel and Hamas on a cease-fire deal appear stalled, and Israeli leaders are increasingly signaling that a war with the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah could be next.

U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip.
Thousands of Iran-backed fighters offer to join Hezbollah in its fight against Israel

Israel launched the war in Gaza after Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack, in which militants stormed into southern Israel, killed some 1,200 people — mostly civilians — and abducted about 250.

Since then, Israeli ground offensives and bombardments have killed more than 37,600 people in Gaza, according to the territory's Health Ministry, which does not distinguish between combatants and civilians in its count.

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