No safe haven in Gaza

Philippe Lazzarini, head of the UN Relief & Works Agency, said today that there is no haven in besieged Gaza for civilians, including in UN shelters and Israeli-designated “safe zones.” More than 16,000 Gazans have reportedly been killed by Israel’s response to Hamas terrorists’ October attack. [node:read-more:link]

Gaza truce explodes

The week-log ceasefire in Israel’s war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip has ended abruptly after the two sides exchange hostages and prisoners and permitted humanitarian aid to flow into besieged Gaza City. Israel resumed its devastating air and artillery strikes today and the Hamas-run health ministry said 178 persons were killed and dozens wounded. [node:read-more:link]

UNSC weighs in on Gaza

The UN Security Council adopted its first resolution November 16 since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war, calling for “urgent and extended humanitarian pauses” in Gaza to address the escalating crisis for Palestinians. Israel immediately rejected the resolution which had 12-0 support on the UNSC with the U.S., Britain and Russia abstaining. [node:read-more:link]

Homes for Heroes

A $4-million project opened in Edmonton two years ago with provincial, city and private sponsorship is giving homeless military veterans a fresh start, setting them up to return to the workforce or school. Taking its cue from a program started in Calgary in 2019, the Homes for Heroes Foundation now is planning similar ventures in Manitoba and Ontario. “Every day I come into work knowing we're helping veterans who want the help,” says caseworker Michael Schneider. “There's honour in that.” [node:read-more:link]

Israel agrees to pause assault

The U.S. said today that Israel has begun daily four-hour pauses in fighting in northern Gaza to allow residents to flee. National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby said each pause would be announced at least three hours in advance. “We’ve been told […] there will be no military operations in these areas over the duration of the pause, and that this process is starting today,” he said. [node:read-more:link]

“Urgent action” needed in Gaza

Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly and her G-7 counterparts called today for “urgent action” to help civilians trapped in Gaza. In a statement released after two days of talks in Tokyo, they balanced support for Israel’s right to defend itself while condemning Hamas and seeking a “humanitarian pause” in Israel’s siege. [node:read-more:link]

UN agencies call for ceasefire

Despite Israel’s refusal, the heads of 18 UN agencies and non-profit organizations called November 5 for an immediate ceasefire in the Israeli-Hamas war which has killed thousands of civilians. Expressing “shock and horror”, they said in a joint statement that “enough is enough” in the month-long siege of Gaza in retaliation for Hamas’ brutal attack in northern Israel. [node:read-more:link]

Foreign nationals leaving Gaza

Global Affairs Canada expects the exodus of foreign nationals to Egypt from war-torn Gaza to continue in the coming days even as stranded Canadians were warned that their safety could not be guaranteed if they opt not to leave. “Canada has one of the largest contingents of nationals in Gaza,” GAC said November 1. “We expect further crossings daily.” [node:read-more:link]

Canadians in Lebanon on their own

More than 17,000 Canadians in Lebanon have registered with their embassy in Beirut for evacuation as an Israeli-Hesbollah conflict escalates. However, Global Affairs Canada says they should not count on a military airlift. The GAC notice October 30 echoed comment a week earlier by Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly. [node:read-more:link]

Preparing for Lebanon evac

More than 300 Canadian military personnel are staged in Cyprus, Athens and Beirut to support what could be another mass evacuation of Canadians from Lebanon if skirmishes between Hesbollah and Israel escalate. “Probabilities are hivh enough that we decided to lean forward,” their Canadian Army commander, Lieutenant-Colonel Richard Bernatchez, said October 26. “I could go tomorrow morning.” [node:read-more:link]

Israel urged to ease blockade

Humanitarian assistance to Gaza remains hobbled by Israeli restrictions, but the U.S. says Israel should lift its ban on hospitals’ generator fuel supplies. Three days of limited aid convoys have seen only 54 truckloads of emergency materials enter from Egypt but no fuels out of concern that it would be seized by Hamas militants. [node:read-more:link]

A looming “shameful chapter”

DND/CAF Ombudsman Gregory Lick says Canada’s efforts to support former language and cultural advisers who worked with the CAF in Afghanistan have been “inadequate or nonexistent.” In a letter to Defence Minister Bill Blair, he says Canada has “a moral obligation” to help the former contract workers to deal with post-traumatic stress disorder and other health issues. [node:read-more:link]

Ukrainian children repatriated

Qatar said today that four Ukrainian families have been reunited with children who were taken by local authorities after Russia’s invasion began nearly 20 months ago. n February 2022. Kyiv has said “tens of thousands” of Ukrainian children were “kidnapped” and Qatari officials said they hope the latest development would be “the beginning” of a broad repatriation. [node:read-more:link]

Israel airlift begins

Two RCAF CC-150 Polaris transports were used to airlift 281 Canadians and their families out of Israel to Athens, a program the government says will continue with two flights daily as long as required. [node:read-more:link]

Gazans told to leave

Preparing for a major strike into Gaza City against Hamas terrorists, the Israeli Army has told the city’s residents to “evacuate south for your own safety.” The U.N. said moving some 1.1 million would have “devastating humanitarian consequences.” [node:read-more:link]


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