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Pakistan condemns Israeli terrorism after airstrikes pound Gaza

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  • Israeli military’s new airstrikes end more than a year of calm.
  • 10 Palestinians killed as Israeli airstrikes hit Gaza.
  • PM says if barbarism had a face, it would be that of Israel.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Saturday condemned Israel’s killing of Palestinians in Gaza as fresh violence continued a second day, ending more than a year of relative calm along the border.

Israel on Friday said it had launched a special operation against the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group, killing one of its senior commanders in a surprise daytime air strike on a high-rise building in Gaza City.

Health authorities in the enclave controlled by Hamas said 10 people had been killed by Israel’s bombardment, including a five-year-old girl, with 79 others injured. Israel’s army estimated that its operation had killed 15.

In a tweet, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said the martyrdom of 10 Palestinians, including a five-year-old girl in Gaza, is the latest act of Israeli terrorism.

“If impunity and barbarism had a face, it would have been that of Israel, which has targeted Palestinians without any care for consequences. Pakistan strongly condemns Israeli airstrikes.”

Latest spate of aggression typical of Israeli atrocities: FO

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in a brief statement, said that Pakistan strongly condemns recent air strikes by Israel on Gaza that resulted in deaths including of a five-year old girl, and injuries to so many innocent Palestinians.

“The latest spate of aggression is typical of the Israeli atrocities, illegal actions and indiscriminate use of force against innocent Palestinians over the decades in complete defiance of international human rights and humanitarian laws,” the Foreign Office said.

Pakistan called upon the international community to urge Israel to put an immediate end to the “blatant use of force and flagrant violations of human rights” of the Palestinian people. “It is imperative to immediately stop the aggression,” the Foreign Office stressed.

“We renew our call for a viable, independent and contiguous Palestinian State, with pre-1967 borders, and Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital being the only just, comprehensive and lasting solution of the Palestinian question, in accordance with the relevant United Nations and OIC resolutions,” the statement read.

In the occupied West Bank, the Israeli military said it had apprehended 19 Islamic Jihad members in overnight arrest raids.

A woman looks on as she stands next to a damaged building where senior commander of Islamic Jihad group Tayseer al-Jaabari was killed in Israeli strikes, in Gaza City on August 6, 2022. — Reuters
A woman looks on as she stands next to a damaged building where senior commander of Islamic Jihad group Tayseer al-Jaabari was killed in Israeli strikes, in Gaza City on August 6, 2022. — Reuters

Palestinian freedom fighters fired at least 160 rockets over the border, the military said, some deep into Israel toward the commercial hub Tel Aviv.

Most of the missiles were intercepted, and a few people were lightly injured when running to shelters.

Egypt, the United Nations and Qatar had begun mediating an end to the violence, according to a Palestinian official with knowledge of the efforts, “but no breakthrough yet”, the official said.

Smoke and fire rise above Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza strip, during an Israeli air strike, on August 5, 2022. Israel pounded Gaza with air strikes today, killing at least 15 people, and triggering a barrage of retaliatory rocket fire from groups in the Palestinian enclave. — AFP
Smoke and fire rise above Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza strip, during an Israeli air strike, on August 5, 2022. Israel pounded Gaza with air strikes today, killing at least 15 people, and triggering a barrage of retaliatory rocket fire from groups in the Palestinian enclave. — AFP

A Western-backed Palestinian Authority official condemned Israel’s attacks.

“We call on the international community to intervene and provide protection for our people,” Civil Affairs Minister Hussein al-Sheikh said on Twitter.

Further escalation would largely depend on Hamas, the group which controls Gaza, and whether it would opt to join the fighting.

Tensions rose this week after Israeli forces arrested an Islamic Jihad commander in the West Bank, drawing threats of retaliation from the group.

The frontier had been largely quiet since May 2021, when 11 days of fierce fighting between Israel and militants left at least 250 people in Gaza and 13 in Israel dead.

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Zaidong, the ambassador, said China will fully back Pakistan’s counterterrorism operations.

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Reaffirming on Thursday that China will provide Pakistan with unwavering support in its fight against terrorism is Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Jiang Zaidong.

In an interview that was broadcast on television, the ambassador promised to cooperate with Pakistan and said that China will protect the interests and safety of the citizens of the two friendly nations.

Zaidong underscored that efforts to undermine the two nations’ bilateral relationship would be thwarted by China’s cooperation with Pakistan.

Also, he emphasized how crucial China-Pakistan relations have become strategically given the changing nature of the world.

In highlighting the transformative impact of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), the ambassador reaffirmed his nation’s commitment to seeing it through.

In addition to creating thousands of employment, he said, “the CPEC has facilitated significant advancements in power generation and transportation infrastructure with over $25 billion in direct investments and substantial infrastructure development.”

Zaidong stressed the value of sharing ideas and knowledge between Pakistan and China, acknowledging their shared security objectives.

Stressing that both countries have a common future, he envisioned their partnership having a greater social impact.

Concerning the terrorist attack on Chinese nationals [working on the Dasu dam], the ambassador expressed gratitude to the Pakistani people for their condolences and sympathy and commended the government for its prompt action.

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Mild rain in Lahore improves the weather

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Early on Friday, light rain in the province capital Lahore and its surrounding areas improved the weather.

But rain also led to power outages in several areas of Lahore, as multiple feeders of the Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO) blew, leaving whole sections of the city without power.

Details show that rain was observed in a number of locations throughout the city, including Model Town, Gulberg, Garden Town, Mall Road, Lakshmi Chowk, Gulshan Ravi, Jail Road, and Sanda.

However, the Met Office has forecasted an additional day of rain for the city during the next 24.

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The government will begin coordinated action against lawbreakers in the Katcha region

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On Friday, Mohsin Naqvi, the interior minister, announced that the government would begin a coordinated operation in the Katcha region to eradicate the miscreants for good.

He stated that collaborative efforts in the Katcha region will make use of contemporary technologies, including drones.

According to Mohsin Naqvi, all security agencies, including the police, should make sure that SOPs are fully implemented in order to protect Chinese nationals living in Pakistan.

He declared that any carelessness in this respect will not be accepted at all while presiding over a meeting to review the National Action Plan’s implementation at NACTA headquarters in Islamabad.

According to Naqvi, failure to follow the SOPs for the safety of foreign nationals will result in severe disciplinary action.

“We have to outfit our departments with cutting-edge technology to eradicate terrorism,” stated the interior minister. He declared that the provinces will receive all the assistance from the federation in this area.

Anti-state forces will be permanently driven out of the Katcha region, according to Naqvi. The interior minister expressed satisfaction with the anti-smuggling operations and stated that all ministries need to make sure that smugglers face stern legal action.

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