Israel-Hamas war: Mideast leaders have few answers for post-Gaza war

Middle Eastern leaders gathered in Qatar in search of solutions for the post-Gaza war, with the only certainty being their opposition to sending their troops into the Palestinian territory ravaged by Israel’s war against the Hamas.

The Palestinian question is very sensitive for the leaders of the Arab world, this war which has lasted since October 7 having triggered massive demonstrations in several countries.

At the annual Doha forum that ended on Monday, Qatar reaffirmed that no Arab country would send armed forces to stabilize the situation once hostilities cease.

“No one in the region will agree to send troops into the field (only to find themselves in front of) an Israeli tank. This is unacceptable,” said Qatari Prime Minister Mohammed bin Abdelrahmane Al-Thani.

He also opposed sending an international force to Gaza under current conditions.

The Palestinians were represented by the Palestinian Authority, in power in the West Bank, territory occupied since 1967 by Israel. The Gaza Strip is controlled by Hamas, in power since 2007.

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said Hamas could not be eradicated. Hamas “is an integral part of the Palestinian political mosaic,” he stressed during the forum.

However, the eradication of Hamas is the stated objective of Israel, which has sworn to annihilate the Islamist movement in retaliation for the attack perpetrated on October 7 from Gaza on Israeli soil, which left 1,200 dead, mostly civilians. , according to Israeli authorities.

“Stop the massacre”

In Gaza, Israeli bombings have left at least 18,412 dead, according to a report published Tuesday by the Hamas government.

If the international community does not manage the post-war period well, warned Jordanian Prime Minister Bisher al-Khasawneh, “we will end up with an even more horrible situation in a year or two.”

“I think over the last thirty years we have had too much process and too little peace,” he added.

He expressed the hope that the war would serve as a “wake-up call”, especially as the conflict threatens to cause a conflagration in the region.

Since the start of the war, groups linked to Iran, which supports Hamas, have increased attacks against US and allied forces in Iraq, Syria and Yemen, while Israel has been engaged in near-border clashes. daily newspapers with the Islamist Hezbollah movement in Lebanon.

The Israeli-Palestinian issue is “at the center and heart of all conflicts in the region,” Thani said. “What happens every day in Gaza does not only affect the forces in Lebanon or Yemen. They also affect an entire generation who could become radicalized because of these images,” he added.

However, the Doha forum did not lead to anything concrete. Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and Egypt were not represented at a high level.

For their part, the United States, Israel’s main diplomatic and military ally, has already indicated that the Palestinian Authority could govern both Gaza and the West Bank after the hostilities.

But the Palestinians say a much more fundamental response is needed, one that takes seriously “an independent, sovereign and viable Palestinian state,” in Mr. Shtayyeh’s words.

Qatar, which welcomes the leaders of Hamas on its soil, recalled that it was still working towards the establishment of a new truce, like that of November which resulted in a one-week pause in the fighting and the exchange of dozens of Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners and humanitarian aid.

Mr. Thani, however, warned that Israel’s incessant bombing of Gaza was “reducing the room for maneuver” for a ceasefire. “We all have a collective responsibility to stop the massacre, to return to the negotiating table to find a lasting solution,” he said.

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source site-39