7 children, 4 women among 29 Palestinians killed in Israeli airstrike on blockaded Gaza

News Network
May 12, 2023

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Gaza City, Apr 12: A high-profile commander of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad resistance movement has been killed when the Israeli military carried out airstrikes against targets in the besieged Gaza Strip, hours after the group announced the death of one of its military leaders in a pre-dawn strike carried out by the regime.

With this the death toll in blockaded Palestinian enclave has mounted to 29 including seven children and four women. 

Meanwhile, retaliatory rocket fire from the Gaza Strip killed one person in the central Israeli city of Rehovot and injured at least two others, Israeli police said. Three others sustained shrapnel injuries elsewhere in Israel.

Cairo was mediating efforts towards a truce between Israel and the Islamic Jihad militant group, while European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell called for "an immediate comprehensive ceasefire".

The United States stopped short of a clear call for a truce, but State Department spokesman Vedant Patel said the casualties were "tragic and heartbreaking", while urging that steps be "taken to ensure that violence is reduced".

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said "the bloodletting must end now", and the UN warned of "a negative impact on an already difficult humanitarian situation in Gaza".

A source close to Islamic Jihad later disclosed that "a final formula for a ceasefire" was said to be under discussion in Egypt. The Israeli army, however, said just before midnight (2100 GMT) that it was continuing to strike Islamic Jihad targets.

Gaza fighters have fired 620 rockets at Israel since Wednesday, the military said, adding that 179 had been intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defence system. The army said 25 percent of rockets fired from Gaza fell into the territory itself. 

Shops in Gaza were shuttered and the streets largely abandoned as Israeli military aircraft circled the territory, where several buildings lay in ruins.

Islamic Jihad confirmed it had lost five military leaders in strikes in recent days, including Ahmed Abu Deka -- the deputy of Ali Ghali, commander of a rocket launch unit, who was also killed by Israel on Thursday.

The Israeli army said it had fired at 191 targets across Gaza on Thursday.

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine said four of its fighters had also been killed.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said Thursday evening that it had documented 26 dead on the Palestinian side -- 13 civilians, seven of them children, as well as four members of armed groups and nine others whose status was not yet determined.

In Gaza City's Al-Rimal district, Mamoun Radi, 48, said: "We hope that the wave of escalation will end, but we support revenge for the martyrs.

"Israel assassinated a leader of (Islamic) Jihad at dawn today because it does not want calm."

Across southern Israel, sirens wailed intermittently through the night and on Thursday morning.

Ashkelon resident Miriam Keren, 78, said a Gaza rocket had destroyed a workshop and damaged her house.

"All the shrapnel is in the room; the house was shaken very powerfully, the glasses fell, the walls were damaged," she said.

"Luckily, I have a safe room and I entered it immediately and closed the door.

"This isn't the first time the house was hit but I'm not afraid, neither was I yesterday. You're shocked for a moment, but it's not about fear. It's more unpleasant, very unpleasant."

An Islamic Jihad source said Mohammad al-Hindi, who heads the group's political bureau, arrived in Cairo on Thursday for talks with Egyptian intelligence officials.

An Egyptian source, meanwhile, told AFP a security delegation from Cairo would be in Tel Aviv later Thursday for talks with Israeli officials on a ceasefire.

Israeli officials confirmed Egypt's involvement in attempts to facilitate an understanding between the sides aimed at halting the hostilities.

Both Hamas, which rules Gaza, and Islamic Jihad are considered terrorist groups by Israel and the United States.

This week's Gaza clashes are the worst since a three-day escalation in August killed 49 Palestinians, with no Israeli fatalities.

Violence has also flared in the occupied West Bank, where the Israeli army has staged repeated raids against militants that have often flared into street clashes or gun battles.

On Thursday, two Palestinians died from their wounds after being shot by the Israeli army in a raid the day before in the West Bank city of Qabatiya, the Palestinian health ministry said.

The conflict has escalated since veteran leader Benjamin Netanyahu returned to power late last year, heading a coalition with extreme right and ultra-Orthodox parties.

Israel has also been shaken by its biggest domestic political crisis in decades, as mass protests have flared against plans to reform the justice system that have been spearheaded by Netanyahu, who is also battling corruption charges in court.

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News Network
May 25,2024

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Mangaluru: The Mangaluru city police are set to intensify efforts to address issues such as triple riding, helmetless riding, and one-way traffic violations in the city.

During a phone-in programme organized by the city police on Friday, callers highlighted several concerns including footpath encroachment, triple riding, helmetless riding, and the inconvenience caused by garages parking vehicles on the road, hindering both pedestrians and motorists.

A caller from Falnir reported that underage children were riding two-wheelers without helmets early in the morning in the Falnir and Attavar areas. Another caller from Katipalla reported instances of triple riding and minors riding two-wheelers.

In response, Commissioner of Police Anupam Agrawal promised to conduct a special drive to address these violations.

Citizens also brought to the commissioner’s attention the lack of speed breakers in the city, especially near Bhagini Samaja, Jeppu Market Road, and on the road to Car Street near the passport office. The commissioner agreed to look into the issue.

Regarding complaints about the use of tinted glasses or sun films on vehicle windshields, the commissioner mentioned that drives would be conducted to penalize those violating the rule. Autorickshaw drivers also raised concerns about e-autorickshaws operating without permits in the city, which causes inconvenience for regular autorickshaws.

The commissioner of police noted that the RTA had stopped issuing permits for autorickshaws after 1997. However, electric autorickshaws do not require permits to operate. As a result, more e-autorickshaws have emerged. To address the autorickshaw drivers’ issues, the deputy commissioner will be asked to convene a meeting at the earliest.

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News Network
May 17,2024

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The United Arab Emirates has announced a 10-year Blue residency visa for individuals who have made exceptional efforts and contributions to protecting the environment.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, who chaired the Cabinet meeting at Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi formally approved this. 

He said the move comes in line with implementing the directives of President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who had announced 2024 as the Year of Sustainability.

The Blue visa will be granted to individuals championing sustainability and the use of modern technologies in promoting the circular economy, and other relevant fields.

Sheikh Mohammed said the sustainability of our economy has become linked to the sustainability of our environment, and our national directions in this area are clear and consistent.

He also approved the National Youth Agenda, among several initiatives, instructing the Minister of Youth to prioritise five key areas: empowering youth economically, developing their scientific skills, reinforcing their national identity, enhancing their community contributions, and activating their role in representing their country on the international stage.

CEO of Artificial Intelligence

The Cabinet has approved the introduction of the post of CEO of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in all major federal entities, in line with the UAE's strategy to strengthen its position in AI.

“Today, we approved the introduction of the CEO of Artificial Intelligence role in all major federal entities, as part of the UAE’s strategy to solidify its position in the field of artificial intelligence,” the Vice President said.

The initiative aims to facilitate the integration of AI tools within these institutions, further advancing the transition toward a new era driven by cutting-edge technologies across federal entities.

University rankings

The Cabinet also endorsed a new framework for categorising higher education institutions across the nation. The forthcoming national rankings will assess over 70 higher education establishments based on the quality of their education, the employability of their graduates, the strength of their scientific research, and their collaborations with international scientific institutions.

The unveiling of these university rankings marks a significant stride in elevating the calibre of our higher education system and fostering transparency. It empowers families to make informed decisions, selecting the most suitable and exemplary educational pathways for their children,” Sheikh Mohammed said.

“During the meeting, we were updated on recent advancements in our national space sector, with our national cadres now comprising 38 per cent of personnel engaged in global space projects. Additionally, expenditure on space research has seen a 14 per cent increase."

"Our commitment remains steadfast in guiding our youth towards promising and pioneering sectors while safeguarding our environment and adopting leading international technologies within our government. Concurrently, we are dedicated to enhancing our higher education systems, ensuring a brighter future for our youth,” Sheikh Mohammed added.

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News Network
May 23,2024

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Bengaluru: Patients visiting government hospitals in Karnataka recently were shocked when they noticed that some drugs had labels of Animal Husbandry Veterinary Sciences (AHVS) but the department concerned has said it was only a logo related issue and that the medicines were indeed meant for human use.

The Karnataka State Medical Supplies Corporation Limited (KSMSCL) said there was an error in the 'logogram' design, but the product was of standard quality and 'human use only'.

As the typo led to panic among patients, KSMSCL Managing Director Chidananda Sadashiva Vatare said in a statement that the product permission copies were submitted and confirmed they were permitted to manufacture as per required medical standards and for human use only.

According to sources in KSMSCL, there were seven drugs which had the AHVS label. This included eye and nasal drops.

These drugs were supplied by a private firm with a total value of Rs 62.9 lakh and it reached the government warehouse on January 5, this year.

The drugs were Methyl Prednisolone injection, Carboxymethylcellulose Eye Drops, Oxymetazoline Pediatric (Nasal) Drops, Flurbiprofen Eye Drops IP, Sodium Chloride (Nasal) Drops, Timolol Maleate Drops and Oxymetazoline Hydrochloride (Nasal) Solution IP.

"The analytical test reports from NABL/government approved laboratories and in-house test reports of the products opined as the products referred above are of standard quality. The test reports from the private empanelled laboratories of KSMSCL have reported these products are of standard quality," Vatare said.

The products were supplied to all the warehouses in the state by the supplier by January 5, he said, adding the supplier requested KSMSCL on January 18 to accept the supplied products by masking the typo.

"It is to be noted that no changes were done in the label of the product information provided. Also, the logogram design was correct in one part of the product and only in another part was there a printing error in the logogram design which was masked, where instead of Health department it was typed as AHVS department."

"The supplier was also imposed a fine of one per cent on the purchase order value and all warehouses were instructed to distribute the products only after masking the error. The supplier was also warned not to repeat the mistake," he said.

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