Israel and Hamas at war | Trudeau spoke with a member of the Israeli war cabinet

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke with Benny Gantz, a member of Israel’s war cabinet, to affirm Canada’s support for Israel and “its right to defend itself in accordance with international law,” Trudeau’s office said Thursday .

In a summary of Wednesday evening’s call, the Prime Minister’s Office said Mr. Trudeau strongly emphasized the importance of “taking all possible measures to protect civilians and minimize the number of casualties” in the war between Israel and Hamas.

Mr. Gantz posted his own summary of the call on X, formerly Twitter, on Thursday morning. He wrote that the Canadian prime minister “conveyed to me his long-standing support for the State of Israel and Israel’s right to self-defense.”

“We discussed the development of the war in Gaza, the atrocious Hamas terrorist attack and the efforts to immediately release the hostages held in Gaza,” Gantz said.

Both statements also note that the two discussed concerns about rising anti-Semitism and spoke about Hamas, which Canada recognizes as a terrorist organization, using civilians as human shields in the Gaza Strip.

“Prime Minister Trudeau reiterated Canada’s support for the right of Israelis and Palestinians to live in peace, dignity and security, and he reaffirmed Canada’s continued support for a two-state solution,” we can say. read in the press release from Mr. Trudeau’s office.

The conversation with Mr. Gantz took place after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu publicly responded to Mr. Trudeau’s strong comments urging Israel to exercise “utmost restraint” in preserving civilian lives.

“I have made it clear that the price of justice cannot be the continued suffering of all Palestinian civilians. Even wars have rules,” Mr. Trudeau said Tuesday in Vancouver.

“The world is witnessing this. The murder of women, children, babies. »

In response, Mr. Netanyahu posted a message on X: “While Israel does everything to keep civilians out of danger, Hamas does everything to keep them in danger,” he wrote.

“It is Hamas, not Israel, that should be held accountable for committing a dual war crime: targeting civilians while hiding behind civilians. »

The current conflict began on October 7, when Hamas militants killed 1,200 Israelis in brutal surprise attacks. The attackers also took around 240 people hostage, taking them to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

In response, Israel declared war on Hamas, then launched a campaign of airstrikes and cut off food, fuel, water and supplies to Gaza, home to 2.3 million Palestinians.

Territory health officials say more than 11,470 people have been killed, two-thirds of them women and children. In addition to this number, another 2,700 people are missing, believed to be buried under the rubble of airstrikes. The official count does not differentiate between civilian deaths and militant deaths. Israel, for its part, claims to have killed thousands of militants.

No departure of Canadians on Thursday


Palestinians of two nationalities wait in a building on the Egyptian side of the border.

Foreign nationals are trying to flee the besieged territory through the Rafah border crossing with Egypt.

However, none of the 386 people linked to Canada trying to leave the territory were able to enter Egypt on Thursday. The General Authority for Crossings and Borders published the latest list of people authorized to leave Gaza early this morning on its Facebook page, and it did not include any Canadians.

Global Affairs Canada said Thursday that 367 Canadian citizens, permanent residents and their family members have been able to leave Gaza so far, including nine people who left without government assistance.

Two people were able to leave the territory on Wednesday, and ten made the trip on Monday. The Canadian government said it could not determine how many people could cross the border each day.

Internet and telephone services collapsed across the Gaza Strip on Thursday due to lack of fuel, the main Palestinian supplier said.

“Even in the event of a communications interruption, we continue to attempt to contact Canadian citizens, permanent residents and their eligible family members through all available channels and we also remain in contact with their loved ones in Canada,” said Business. in a press release on Thursday.

Fighting in southern Gaza?

At the same time, Israel has signaled that its offensive against Hamas could next target the south of the territory, where most of the population has taken refuge.

If the assault moves south, it is unclear where the people will go, as Egypt refuses to allow a mass transfer to its soil.

The international community — including Israel’s closest ally, the United States — has expressed growing concern over the number of civilian deaths. The United States did not call on Israel to end the war, but it warned Israelis that international criticism would intensify the longer the war lasted.

On Thursday, for the second day, Israeli troops searched Al-Shifa hospital, in the north of the territory, looking for traces of Hamas.

They showed weapons they said were hidden in a building, but have yet to disclose any evidence of a central Hamas command center that Israel says is hidden beneath the hospital complex. Hamas and staff at the hospital, Gaza’s largest, deny the allegations.

With reporting from Dylan Robertson and the Associated Press

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