In 5th phase of swap deal, Hamas frees 12 captives, Israel releases 30 Palestinians

News Network
November 29, 2023

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The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas has freed 12 captives in exchange for 30 Palestinians released by the Israeli regime, as part of the fifth phase of a swap deal between the two sides.

The exchange went underway on Tuesday, the fifth day of the agreement that has been clinched between the two sides through Qatar and Egypt's mediation.

The agreement has also brought about a lull in a genocidal Israeli war against the Gaza Strip, which has killed more than 15,500 people across the coastal sliver.

The Israeli regime began the war on October 7 following an operation by Gaza's resistance groups that killed 1,200 Israeli settlers and forces and led to the captivity of hundreds of others.

The captives released by Hamas on the fifth day comprised 10 Israelis and two Thai nationals.

So far, under the deal, Hamas has released a total of 81 captives while Israel has freed 150 Palestinian detainees.

Friday marked the first day of the agreement, which had been initially brokered for four days. The regime and Hamas agreed to extend it for two more days on Monday.

Speaking on Tuesday, Khalil al-Hayya, a member of the Hamas' Political Bureau, said he hoped the deal would be extended for a longer period of time.

Israel, however, has vowed to resume the war with "full force," claiming that it seeks to end Hamas' rule over Gaza.

Hamas has vowed that the Palestinian territory would be only ruled by its own people once the war was over. 

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News Network
March 3,2024

Mangaluru, Mar 3: As the Lok Sabha polls are looming, Dakshina Kannada district administration is gearing up to the election process smoothly. According to Deputy Commissioner Mullai Muhilan M P, there are 171 sensitive polling stations in the district, where additional security measures will be deployed during the polls.

While the district has 1,876 polling stations, the district administration has sufficient number of EVMs and VVPAT machines. He said officials have been directed to make necessary arrangements for the smooth conduct of the elections.

At a preparatory meeting held on Thursday, the DC directed officials to ensure basic infrastructure is available at all polling stations across the eight assembly segments in the district.

Drinking water supply, wash rooms, electricity and other facilities should be provided to the polling stations, he added.

Directing the officials from police and other departments to set up checkpoints at all Kerala-Karnataka border entry points, the DC said vehicles entering the district should be checked thoroughly. “Teams should be formed to man the checkposts, and they should work there everyday. Basic facilities should be provided for the staff at the checkposts,” the DC said.

Insisting officials to work in a coordinated manner, the DC said officials on election duty should work responsibly and ensure that there should be no lapses in their work.

The DC said there is a need to keep a watch on the transactions in nationalised, private and cooperative banks in the district. He also insisted that bank officers should be appointed as micro-observers. ZP CEO Dr Anandh K, SP C B Ryshyanth, DCP Siddharth Goyal, additional DC Santhosh Kumar and others were present.

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News Network
February 22,2024

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Condemnations have poured in from world countries after the United States once again vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution that demanded an immediate ceasefire in Israel’s months-long genocidal war on the besieged Gaza Strip.

The Algeria-drafted resolution called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza and the "unconditional" release of prisoners, with representatives of 13 countries at the 15-member Security Council voting in favour of the resolution and Britain abstaining.

Israel has killed more than 29,000 people, mostly women and children, and injured some 70,000 others in Gaza since the regime launched its US-backed onslaught on October 7, 2023.

The veto, which marks the third time Washington has opposed such a resolution, drew criticism from many countries including China, Russia, Saudi Arabia and even close US allies, France and Slovenia.

'More dangerous situation'

China warned on Wednesday that Washington’s decision to veto the UNSC resolution pushed the war in Gaza into an "even more dangerous" situation.

"China voted in favor of the draft resolution," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning told a regular briefing in Beijing. "The United States has once again single-handedly vetoed it, pushing the situation in Gaza into an even more dangerous situation, in which all parties concerned... have expressed their strong disappointment and dissatisfaction.”

Expressing serious concerns about the situation in Gaza, the Chinese official described as a “moral obligation” the halt to the Israeli aggression on the besieged Palestinian territory.

"The humanitarian situation in Gaza is becoming extremely serious, and regional peace and stability have been severely impacted," Mao said, adding, "The Security Council must take action as quickly as possible to bring a halt to hostilities. This is a moral obligation that cannot be put off.”

The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson stressed that, "We will continue to work with all parties in the international community to push the Security Council to take further responsible and meaningful actions, and make unremitting efforts to quell the war in Gaza at an early date.”

'Another black page'

Russia’s Ambassador to the UN Vasily Nebenzia said the US veto marked “another black page in the history of the Security Council.”

Nebenzia said the US was trying to play for time so that Israel could complete its “inhumane plans” for Gaza, namely to squeeze the Palestinians out of the territory and completely “cleanse” the enclave.

The Russian envoy added that no matter how bitter the “aftertaste” of the vote may be, “we are not in the mood to give up.”

'A regret'

France’s UN envoy Nicolas de Riviere expressed regret that the resolution “could not be adopted, given the disastrous situation” in Gaza.

De Riviere underlined that France, which voted for the resolution, would continue to work towards all captives being released and for a ceasefire to be “implemented immediately.”

'Profound consequences for West Asia'

Amar Bendjama, Algeria’s UN envoy, said the UNSC “failed once again” and warned the move could have profound consequences for the West Asia region as a whole.

“The international community should respond to the calls for ending the killing of Palestinians by calling for an immediate ceasefire. All those impeding such calls should review their policies and their calculations because wrong decisions today will have a cost on our region and our world tomorrow. And this cost will be violence and instability,” Bendjama said.

“So ask yourselves, examine your conscience. What will your decisions today cause? How will history judge you?”

Qatar’s UN Ambassador Alya Ahmed Saif Al Thani also said she regretted the UNSC’s failure to adopt the Algeria-drafted resolution and pledged to continue facilitating efforts to secure a truce in Gaza.

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Ministry expressed “regret” at the veto and stressed the “need now more than ever to reform the Security Council to carry out its responsibilities in maintaining peace and security with credibility and without double standards.”

Meanwhile, Norway’s mission to the UN said it “regrets” that the council was not able to adopt a resolution on an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.

“It is imperative to end the horror in Gaza,” it added.

Cuban President Miguel Diaz-Canel Bermudez also blasted the US, saying its veto made Washington complicit in Israel’s crimes against Palestinians.

“The US has just vetoed again the UN Security Council resolution that demanded an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and an end to the forced displacement of the Palestinian population,” Bermudez said in a social media post.

“They are accomplices of this genocide of Israel against Palestine.”

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News Network
February 26,2024

Mangaluru: The Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation's Mangaluru and Puttur divisions will introduce eco-friendly electric buses on prominent routes in Dakshina Kannada district as well as inter-district destinations soon.

The state govt has sanctioned 45 electric buses to Mangaluru division and 40 buses to Puttur division. The process of handing over the vehicles is under progress.

Rajesh Shetty, senior divisional controller, KSRTC Mangaluru division said that the new electric buses sanctioned by govt are expected to arrive soon.

“Govt has sanctioned AC and non-AC electric buses. Based on a survey, we are planning to introduce the electric buses on the Mangaluru-Dharmastala, Mangaluru-Manipal and Mangaluru-Kasaragod routes. The buses will have the capacity to run about 200km after each recharge cycle of nearly two hours. Hence, it will be difficult to introduce electric buses on long- distance routes like Bengaluru and Mysuru,” he said, adding that the division also expects the arrival of more buses in the near future.

“The division has been preparing to set up charging stations at various depots and a tender process in this regard has also been initiated. While a station with the capacity of five charging points will be set up in Mangaluru depot at Bejai, another with 15 points will be opened at Kuntikana,” he said.

“Meanwhile, Dakshina Kannada district has been selected under the PM-eBus Sewa Scheme too. Accordingly, 100 electric buses will be sanctioned to the district and it is likely to arrive by next year. 

Meanwhile, Mangaluru division is also likely to receive non-AC Ashwamedha Classic buses from the state govt in the next phase. The state govt is likely to sanction at least 20 Ashwamedha Classic buses to the division,” he added.

Jayakar Shetty, KSRTC Puttur divisional controller, said the 40 eco-friendly electric buses sanctioned to the division will be introduced on Subrahmanya-Dharmastala and Dharmastala-Mangaluru routes.

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