Israel's president calls for return to normalcy, Jordanian king calls for a political horizon – DW – 1/18/2024

Israeli President Isaac Herzog said today, Thursday (January 18, 2024), that Israel is intensifying prayers for the arrival of an emergency shipment of medicines that entered the Gaza Strip via Egypt. Agreement arranged by Qatar and FranceFor hostages held by Hamas in the besieged Gaza Strip.

“We pray that all the medicine will reach them, but this is only the beginning,” Herzog said in a speech before the World Economic Forum in Davos, sitting next to a picture of the youngest child, a one-year-old. Hostages.

While he said he did not deny the “human tragedy” inflicted on civilians in the Gaza Strip, Herzog described the Israeli military campaign as a step toward more peaceful relations with the Palestinians in the future and strengthening global security.

Normalization with Saudi Arabia

Herzog called on world powers to help in the post-Gaza war phase and pointed out that before the Hamas attack, Israel was on its way. Establish relations with Saudi Arabia Just like it did with the UAE and Bahrain in 2020.

He said, “We all realize that there needs to be a vision, and I believe part of that is a return to the normalization process between Israel and its neighbors in the region.”

Jordanian move to end war

Jordanian King Abdullah II today, Thursday, stressed the need for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, the protection of civilians and the unhindered delivery of relief and medical aid.

Al-Mamlaq TV quoted King Abdullah as saying during a reception today with Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan, who is visiting Amman, that “what is happening must be addressed before the situation gets out of control and leads to the situation in the region.” Exploding.” The Jordanian king stressed the need to unify regional positions to push towards a real political horizon leading to a two-state solution.

Meanwhile, Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi told a press conference with his Turkish counterpart Hakan Fidan on Thursday that Israel should allow displaced people in Gaza to return to their homes.

Al-Safadi emphasized that the focus at this point is of course the “continuing and worsening catastrophic conditions in Gaza.” He continued: “Our positions are clear in rejecting displacement, rejecting the Israeli presence in Gaza and rejecting the withdrawal of any part of Gaza.”

For his part, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he would address the United Nations Security Council next week about “joint efforts” to resolve the Middle East crisis.

He noted that it should include direct talks between the Palestinian and Israeli leaderships and lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state.

Hezbollah and the US are calling for peace

Separately, Lebanese officials said the Iranian-backed Hezbollah group rejected Washington's initial proposals to calm the ongoing border skirmish with Israel, including withdrawing its fighters from the border, but the group was still open to U.S. diplomacy. A total war.

U.S. Special Envoy to Lebanon Amos Hagstein is leading diplomatic efforts to restore security along the border between Lebanon and Israel, a region sliding dangerously toward a major escalation of the conflict amid ongoing developments in the region. War in the Gaza Strip. These efforts have become more urgent in light of attacks by Iran-aligned Houthis from Yemen on ships in the Red Sea, retaliatory U.S. strikes, and conflicts and acts of violence in other regions of the Middle East.

Hezbollah's position is to continue firing rockets at Israel until a comprehensive cease-fire occurs in the Gaza Strip. Hezbollah's rejection of Hockstein's proposals was not previously reported in news reports.

A Lebanese official and a security source said the group's openness to diplomatic contact signaled its willingness, despite being rejected by Hezbollah and fired upon by rocket barrages in support of Gaza. Avoid a wider war Even after an Israeli strike hit Beirut on January 2, killing a key Hamas leader.

Israel has also said it wants to avoid war, but both sides say they are ready to fight if necessary. Israel has warned of severe retaliation if an agreement is not reached to secure the border area.

Notably, Hezbollah is a Shia political party supported by an armed group in Iran and Lebanon. The United States, Germany and Arab countries consider Hezbollah a terrorist organization, while the European Union classifies its armed wing as a terrorist group.

Field situation

The Israeli army announced that it had killed 60 militants, including 40 in Khan Younis alone, in the fighting in the Gaza Strip in the last 24 hours.

In the coastal city of Eilat, the Israeli military sounded warning sirens and a local radio station reported hearing an explosion after intercepting an incoming air threat. Located on the Red Sea, Eilat has previously been the target of long-range missiles launched by the Houthis from Yemen in solidarity with Gaza.

Meanwhile, the al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas' military wing, announced Thursday that 30 Israeli soldiers were killed and wounded in a bomb attack on a house in the southern Gaza Strip.

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Hamas also announced that 93 people were killed overnight in Israeli strikes targeting the southern Gaza Strip, where the Israeli military has intensified its operations. The health ministry in the Hamas government announced that the death toll from Israeli bombing in the Gaza Strip had risen to 24,620.

Hamas, a Palestinian Islamic armed group, has been classified as a terrorist organization by countries including Germany, the European Union, and the United States.

AFP/SSH (AFP, Reuters, dpa)

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