‘Global pressure’ won’t stop Israel from continuing its Gaza offensive: Netanyahu

According to Israeli counts, in the Oct. 7 raid, Hamas fighters killed 1,200 people and took 253 captives, setting off a huge assault on Gaza.

While ceasefire negotiations were scheduled to resume, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected international pressure on Sunday and declared he will continue the military operation against Hamas in Gaza, where relief organizations warn that hunger is imminent.

After more than five months of fighting, Netanyahu declared during a cabinet meeting that Israel would advance into Rafah, the final area of the small, densely populated Gaza territory that was comparatively safe.

“We’re going to work in Rafah. Without making it clear if he meant that the attack would start in weeks or last for several weeks, he stated, “This will take several weeks, and it will happen.”

Over a million displaced individuals from other sections of the shattered enclave have sought sanctuary in Rafah; Israel’s allies have repeatedly advised Netanyahu not to assault Rafah without a plan to protect civilians.

Speaking in Jordan prior to his intended trip to Israel, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz stated that efforts at this time were “about ensuring we come to a long-lasting ceasefire” and that an attack on Rafah would make regional peace “very difficult”.

Netanyahu responded angrily to the allies’ demands, asking, “Are your memories that short? How could you have missed the worst Jewish massacre since the Holocaust on October 7th? Are you really so eager to deprive Israel the ability to protect itself against the horrors of Hamas?”

Though relief organizations and Israel’s supporters are still skeptical, he has stated that Israel has a plan to evacuate residents from Rafah.

According to Israeli counts, in the Oct. 7 raid, Hamas fighters killed 1,200 people and took 253 captives, setting off a huge assault on Gaza.

Health officials in Hamas-run Gaza claim that Israel’s air and ground campaign in the territory has killed over 31,600 people. The majority of the population has also been forced from their homes and is on the verge of starvation, according to relief organizations.

The chief of Israel’s Mossad spy service would be attending the negotiations with Qatari, Egyptian, and American mediators, a source familiar with the peace talks in Qatar told Reuters.

Last Monday, Hamas offered a fresh cease-fire plan that called for the swap of Palestinian detainees for Israeli captives. Before the group departs, it is scheduled to be discussed by Israel’s security cabinet.

Although a Palestinian official acquainted with mediation efforts stated that the odds of a settlement improved now that Hamas had provided more specifics on the proposed prisoner swap, Netanyahu has already stated that the proposal was based on “unrealistic demands.”

“The mediators were pleased with Hamas’s latest offering. Some in Israel believed the group had improved upon its earlier stance, and Netanyahu alone is now in a position to determine whether a deal is close to happening,” the unnamed official added.

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