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Wednesday 6 December 2023 Dublin: 4°C

# Middle East

This week
3rd December 2023 - 6th December 2023
Fresh Israeli bombardment of Gaza as Hamas and Islamic Jihad launch rockets into Israel
US Vice President Kamala Harris yesterday sharply rebuked the rising civilian toll in Israel’s eight-week war.
Israel carried out more bombardments in Gaza this morning.
International calls - from the US, France, the UN and the Pope - have mounted for a ceasefire.
Hamas and other Palestinian militants announced "rocket barrages" against multiple Israeli cities and towns.
Israeli forces move towards crowded southern Gaza after pulling negotiators out of truce talks
Last month
November 2023
Bobby McDonagh: The Rule of Law matters more than ever when the world is imploding
The former ambassador says that law and order breakdowns in many parts of the world demonstrate how important the rule of law is.
From the West Bank: 'Settler violence and military restrictions strangle Palestinian life'
In the West Bank, Hannah McCarthy meets Palestinians who say settlers are making life unbearable for their communities.
Israeli strikes on Lebanon kill eight, including two journalists
The border between Lebanon and Israel has seen escalating violence, mainly between Israel and the Iran-backed Hezbollah movement.
Brian Rowan on the Middle East: Where have all the leaders gone?
The former BBC correspondent looks at the peace process in the North and asks if Israel and Palestine can ever find a similar route.
Gaza health ministry says more than 80 dead in strikes on refugee camp
The Commissioner General of the UN agency for Palestine Refugees has said he is receiving “horrifying” images of people killed in one of the strikes.
Hundreds of people fled Al-Shifa hospital on foot after its director said the Israeli army ordered it to be evacuated.
The UN agency for Palestinian refugees said 70% of residents have no access to clean water in south Gaza, where raw sewage has begun to flow on the streets.
The director of the Nasser hospital in Khan Yunis said a strike on a residential building in the southern town of Hamad killed 26 people.
Lack of fuel shuts down all internet and phone networks across Gaza
Israeli troops seize control of Gaza port as UN warns of risk of starvation
Holly Cairns: What Israel is doing in Gaza is beyond horrific - we cannot stand idly by
The SocDems leader says the moral authority of Western leaders is lying in tatters, but it’s not too late to take democratic steps for peace.
Bobby McDonagh on Israel/Gaza: 'Peace requires both sides to accept that they can never win'
The former Irish ambassador says Israel and Hamas both believe victory is possible, and this will only lead to more conflict.
Irish diplomats working behind the scenes in hope of freeing kidnapped Emily Hand
A report by
Niall O'Connor
Eight-year-old Irish-Israeli girl Emily Hand is believed to be a hostage of Hamas while 40 Irish citizens are trapped inside Gaza.
The West Bank: 'Settlers have been pointing guns at Palestinians, telling them to stay inside'
Journalist Hannah McCarthy meets one community from Susiya as settler violence uproots Palestinian communities across the West Bank.
Higgins says 'collective punishment' is not something world can accept in Israel-Gaza war
The president said a way must be found to provide ‘reasonable security’ to Israel, while addressing ‘long-neglected rights’ of the Palestinians.
October 2023
Analysis: A land war won't go well and faltering international support means the world knows it
Professor of Peace Studies Paul Rogers says Israel cannot hope to bring any kind of end to the conflict with a ground offensive.
Collective punishment in Gaza: 'An old and familiar tactic, on a new and devastating scale'
Professor Shane Darcy looks at the meaning of collective punishment as an instrument of war and asks if this is what is now happening in Gaza.
What is a war crime and is international law being broken in Israel and Gaza?
A report by
Stephen McDermott
Israel and Hamas have repeatedly accused each other of war crimes.
Doctor: 'I have lived through many wars in Gaza - this one is different - we've lost so many'
Dr Hassan, who cycles to patients now because there is no fuel for his car says Israel is bombing crowded places, ‘they are bombing everywhere’.
Donnacha Ó Beacháin: Israel's diplomatic mission to Ireland has had a rocky few years
The DCU Professor of Politics looks at testy and tense relations between Ireland and Israel in recent years.
Taoiseach: Safety of the 300 Irish troops in the Lebanon region is a 'paramount concern'
Irish citizens living in Lebanon have been warned to leave while commercial options are available.
Celtic fans defy club and display Palestine flags
The Scottish side are expected to face disciplinary action as a result.
'The polluter must pay': Ryan hits out at oil giant Saudi Arabia spending millions on football
The Minister will attend meetings in Abu Dhabi this weekend ahead of COP28 in Dubai in December.
Israel ups hostage estimate to 222, while Hamas puts Gaza death toll at over 5,000
The United Nations estimates Gaza needs about 100 trucks of aid a day to meet the needs of its 2.4 million residents.
Bobby McDonagh: In seeking full truth, we must avoid picking sides between the two narratives
The former Irish Ambassador says many expect Ireland to align itself exclusively with one side or another, but we must instead grapple with the full, complex truth.
Rishi Sunak tells Benjamin Netanyahu 'we want you to win' during visit to Israel
The UK Prime Minister also welcomed the decision to allow humanitarian aid into Gaza.
Biden says hospital blast was apparent result of 'rocket fired by terrorist group in Gaza'
The US President plans to meet Israeli first responders and the families of victims killed and hostages taken when Hamas made its incursion into Israel.
Biden earlier said the explosion at a hospital in Gaza yesterday "appears as though it was done by the other team", not the Israeli Defence Forces.
He arrived in Israel for a diplomatic bid to prevent the war with Hamas from spiralling into an even larger conflict.
He said this afternoon that the US is "pursuing every avenue to bring home” the hostages being held by Hamas.
Hamas says threat of Israeli ground invasion of Gaza Strip 'doesn't scare us'
The latest from the ongoing Middle East crisis.
Larry Donnelly: Moderate voices now matter most in the Middle East amid all the hate and anger
Our columnist looks at the extreme rhetoric from both sides after the Hamas attack this week.
Apartheid has led to this Middle East escalation and it's civilians who will pay the price
Dr Brendan Ciarán Browne of Trinity College Dublin looks at the build-up to this week’s attacks in Palestine – Israel and the potential fallout after.
Tom Clonan: International community needs to intervene to stop a catastrophe in the Middle East
The senator says terrorist attacks by Hamas have not advanced the cause of the Palestinian people.
This year
Ireland, Israel and Palestine: how politics and history have created a complicated relationship
Ireland is attempting to re-kindle support for a solution to the conflict.
Micheál Martin says it's not time to abandon 'two-state solution' to Israel-Palestine conflict
The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs visited the region this week.
Micheál Martin: Calling Israel an apartheid state 'doesn't add a whole lot' to peace process
The Tánaiste visited the occupied West Bank today.
Two years of the Taliban: 'It cannot last as it rules by fear and violence'
For Afghan opposition figures and those in exile to stand a chance against the Taliban, more international support is needed, writes David Loyn of King’s College in London.
Israel prime minister says it 'will not allow Hamas to establish itself in Lebanon'
Tensions have mounted in Israel since last week.
Iranian general says his country is still seeking to kill Trump
The regime is reportedly still pursuing revenge on the former US President who ordered a top Iranian commander to be assassinated in 2020.
Last year
Oil tanker ‘hit by bomb-carrying drone’ off coast of Oman
The tanker is owned by an Israeli billionaire and suspicion has fallen on Iran.
Israel and Lebanon strike 'historic' maritime border deal as Hezbollah call off threat of attack
The deal comes as Lebanon hopes to extract itself from what the World Bank calls one of the worst economic crises in modern world history.
US 'will not walk away' from Middle East: Biden to Arab leaders
Biden is looking to use the visit to the Middle East to discuss volatile oil prices and outline his vision for Washington’s role in the region.
Biden will use 'all' American power to stop Iran acquiring nuclear weapons
Israel is staunchly opposed to a nuclear deal Tehran signed with world powers in 2015.
Joe Biden lands in Israel on first Middle East tour as US president
Biden will hold talks with Israeli leaders for two days before meeting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the occupied West Bank.
Two Palestinians shot dead by Israelis in occupied West Bank
At least 18 Israelis have been killed in five attacks since March.
Taoiseach will not follow Amnesty International in using 'apartheid' in relation to Israel
Micheál Martin said using the term apartheid would not “add anything right now”.