1683992429 Israel and Islamic Jihad not signaling ceasefire in Gaza soon

Israel and Islamic Jihad not signaling ceasefire in Gaza soon – Portal

GAZA/JERUSALEM, May 13 (Portal) – Israel on Saturday ruled out an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, saying the responsibility rests with Palestinian militants to stop the firing of rockets from an arsenal it believed was within fewer days could be used up while his planes continued the attacks on the enclave.

“We are not holding ceasefire talks,” National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi said at a municipal event near Jerusalem, adding that Israel’s top priority right now is to fire on militants.

Islamic Jihad’s armed wing said it would continue with rocket salvoes as fighting entered the fifth day. “The resistance prepared for months of confrontation,” an Islamic Jihad statement said.

From dawn, Gaza militants fired rockets, set off sirens and sent Israelis across the border, who ran to bomb shelters. A Palestinian worker from Gaza working in Israel was killed by rocket shrapnel, a hospital spokesman said.

The Israeli military said planes hit Islamic Jihad command centers and rocket launchers in Gaza. Huge plumes of smoke rose as loud explosions swept through the bombed areas.

In the Deir Al-Balah area of ​​the central Gaza Strip, a building was razed to the ground as nearby houses were demolished. There were no reports of casualties as local residents searched piles of rubble.

Airstrikes on a house also damaged the nearby Shuhada Al-Aqsa Hospital, injuring several nurses and patients from flying shrapnel, said Eyad Abu Zaher, the hospital’s director.

The Israeli military says it has made every effort to limit civilian casualties and damage to homes, and has accused Islamic Jihad of deliberately locating its command centers in residential areas.


Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh called on the United Nations to intervene as violence swept through the occupied West Bank.

A man stands inside a damaged building at the site of the deadly Israeli raid in Balata camp

[1/5] A man stands inside a damaged building at the site of the deadly Israeli raid in Balata camp in the Israeli-occupied West Bank May 13, 2023. Portal/Raneen Sawafta

Two Palestinians were killed in an Israeli raid on the outskirts of Nablus in the northern West Bank where clashes broke out, the Palestinian Health Ministry said. A military spokesman said gunmen fired with Israeli forces.

Hours later, a Palestinian was shot dead who, according to the Israeli police, had run towards officers with a knife in his hand.

At least four women and six children have died in Gaza, an impoverished coastal area blocked by Israel and Egypt since 2007. In Israel, a woman was killed when a Gaza missile hit an apartment near Tel Aviv.

Egypt has tried to broker a ceasefire against the recent outbreak of violence that has so far killed at least 33 Palestinians and two people in Israel.

A Palestinian official familiar with the ceasefire talks described them as “complicated” and “tough,” but said Cairo was driving its efforts.

Six top Islamic Jihad commanders have been killed since Tuesday when Israeli forces launched a campaign against the Iran-backed group allegedly planning attacks.

Israeli military officials said they had seen no evidence that Hamas, the Islamist group that controls the Gaza Strip, had fired rockets of its own and that the attacks so far had only been aimed at Islamic Jihad sites.

Islamic Jihad, the largest armed group in Gaza after Hamas, has since fired more than 1,000 rockets, some deep within Israel.

Hanegbi said his arsenal totaled 6,000 missiles. Islamic Jihad has not given details of its weapons, but 5,000 projectiles remaining would allow it to maintain a high rate of fire for several days. That schedule would likely change if Hamas joined the fighting.

Like Hamas, Islamic Jihad rejects coexistence with Israel and preaches its destruction. Senior ministers in Israel’s religious-nationalist government have ruled out any state the Palestinians seek in territories captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East War.

Reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi and Maayan Lubell; Edited by William Mallard

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Nidal Al-Mughrabi

Thomson Portal

A senior correspondent with nearly 25 years’ experience covering the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, including multiple wars and the signing of the first historic peace deal between the two sides.