Egypt expressed its “strong condemnation” of the collapse of the temporary ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, and the resumption of intense Israeli airstrikes and military operations targeting the Gaza Strip.
Egypt’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs also called into question Israel’s disregard for peace in a statement posted on Facebook on 1 December.
“This has resulted in renewed casualties among Palestinian civilians, considering it a serious setback and a disregard by the Israeli side for all the efforts made in recent days to extend the ceasefire,” the statement read.
The ministry further cautioned against the potential expansion of Israeli military operations in southern Gaza, while criticizing statements from Israeli officials that seemed to endorse the displacement of Palestinians beyond the borders of Gaza.
“This is a blatant violation of Israel’s commitments as the occupying power and all provisions of international humanitarian law, especially the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949,” the statement added.
The government reiterated Egypt’s steadfast position in opposing any forced displacement of Palestinians. Egypt considers this a non-negotiable red line that should not be crossed.
The foreign ministry called upon influential international entities and relevant UN agencies, particularly the Security Council, to fulfill their responsibilities in ensuring the protection of Palestinian civilians in Gaza.
Egypt also emphasized the crucial importance of the effective implementation of resolutions issued by both the Security Council and the General Assembly to address the ongoing situation in Gaza.
THE CONFLICT SO FAR
After a surprise attack conducted on 7 October by Hamas on a number of southern Israeli towns, which resulted in the deaths of an estimated 1,200 people and more than 220 being taken hostage by Hamas, Israel launched a retaliatory bombing campaign against what it describes as ‘terrorist targets’ in the Gaza Strip.
More than 15,000 Palestinians have been killed in the Gaza Strip — including at least 6,150 children — and over 37,000 others injured. Meanwhile, over 225 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank and more than 2,700 injured. The death toll is no longer being regularly updated due to the collapse of the enclave’s health system.
Israel and Hamas reached an agreement on 22 November, announcing a four-day cessation of hostilities to facilitate the release of 50 hostages held in Gaza, 150 Palestinians imprisoned in Israel, and the entry of humanitarian aid. The truce, extended for three additional days, began on 24 November and ended on 1 December.
Egypt played an active role in mediating the ceasefire agreement along with Qatar and the United States.
During an event in support of Palestine at Cairo International Stadium, President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi stressed that the forced relocation of Palestinians is a “red line” for Egypt, and will not be accepted.
The priority of the Egyptian government since the beginning of the conflict has been de-escalation and securing a path for aid to enter the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing.
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