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The Latest | It would take until 2040 to rebuild all homes destroyed so far in Gaza, UN report says

If the Israel-Hamas War stopped today, we would still have to wait until 2040 to rebuild all the houses destroyed in nearly seven months of bombings and Israeli ground offensives on the territory, according to United Nations estimates published Thursday.

The United States has pressured Israel to increase aid deliveries during the war, and on Wednesday, Israel reopened a border post with the hard-hit northern Gaza Strip for the first time since it was damaged at the start of the war.

Meanwhile, on his seventh visit since the latest war between Israel and Hamas broke out in October, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken pressed for a ceasefire deal. The proposed truce would release hostages held by Hamas in exchange for stopping fighting and delivering much-needed food, medicine and water to Gaza. Palestinian prisoners are also expected to be released under the deal.

On October 7, Palestinian activists launched a unprecedented attack in southern Israel, killing around 1,200 people – mostly civilians – and kidnapping around 250 hostages. Israel activists say still hold around a hundred hostages and the remains of more than 30 other people.

The death toll in Gaza stands at more than 34,500 Palestinians, according to local health authorities, while the territory faces a humanitarian catastrophe. The war has driven around 80 percent of Gaza’s 2.3 million residents from their homes, caused widespread destruction in several towns and pushed northern Gaza back. on the verge of starvation.


— Continuing coverage in the Middle East of the war between Israel and Hamas stops for Protests and police actions in American schools.

— Colombian president says country sever diplomatic relations with Israel about the war in Gaza.

— The Biden administration is considering measures to helping Palestinians start families of the region.

Blinken presses Hamas to seal a ceasefire with Israel, saying “the time has come” to strike a deal.

Follow AP’s coverage of the war at

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BERLIN — German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu discussed efforts to secure the release of hostages held by Hamas and a ceasefire in a phone call Thursday, the spokesman said of the German government Wolfgang Buechner, without providing details.

Further improvements in the delivery of humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza were also a topic discussed, Buechner said in an emailed statement.

According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Germany is Israel’s second largest arms supplier, behind the United States. It is also among countries that announced they would resume cooperation with the United Nations relief agency for Palestinians in Gaza after the release of a report. independent review of its neutrality – a decision that the Israeli Foreign Ministry had described as “regrettable and disappointing”.


BEIRUT — Gaza’s health ministry said Thursday that the bodies of 28 people killed by Israeli strikes had been taken to local hospitals in the past 24 hours. Hospitals also received 51 injured people, he said in his daily report.

This brings the total Palestinian death toll in the war between Israel and Hamas to at least 34,596, the ministry said, and 77,816 injured. THE The Ministry of Health does not make a distinction between combatants and civilians in its counts, but says that women and children represent about two-thirds of those killed.

The Israeli military claims to have killed some 13,000 militants, without providing evidence to support its claims.

FIGHTING IN GAZA has destroyed more than 370,000 homes and will take until at least 2040 to repair them, according to a UN report.

AMMAN, Jordan — If the war in Gaza ended today, it would take until 2040 to rebuild all the homes destroyed during nearly seven months of Israeli bombings and ground offensives in the territory, according to United Nations estimates United published Thursday.

“Each additional day that this war continues brings enormous and compounding costs for Gazans and all Palestinians,” said United Nations Development Program Administrator Achim Steiner.

At least 370,000 homes in Gaza have been damaged, including 79,000 completely destroyed, according to the new report from UNDP and the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia, which details how the Israeli assault, launched after the attack on Hamas on October 7 devastated the economy of the Palestinian territories, and how its impact will increase as the conflict drags on.

After previous conflicts between Israel and Hamas, housing was rebuilt at a rate of 992 units per year. Even if Israel allowed a five-fold increase in construction materials into Gaza, it would be necessary to wait until 2040 to rebuild the destroyed houses, without repairing the damaged ones, the report said.

In Gaza, the Israeli offensive has virtually paralyzed the economy, which contracted by 81% in the last quarter of 2023. The report states that “the productive base of the economy has been destroyed”, with sectors experiencing losses by more than 90%.

Gaza, home to some 2.3 million Palestinians, has been under blockade by Israel and Egypt since Hamas took power in 2007, imposing strict controls on what enters and leaves the territory. Even before the war, it faced “hyper-unemployment” of 45%, reaching almost 63% among young workers. Since the start of the war, some 201,000 jobs have been lost.

The war has also affected the West Bank, where Israel has imposed movement restrictions for months. In 2024, the entire Palestinian economy – including Gaza and the West Bank – has contracted by 25.8% so far, and if the war continues, the loss will reach 29% by July, or the equivalent of $7.6 billion, according to the report.

Hamas welcomes Colombia’s decision to cut ties with Israel

BEIRUT — Palestinian militant group Hamas welcomed Colombia’s announcement that it sever relations with Israelaffirming that such a step is a recognition of the suffering of the Palestinian people.

In its statement Thursday, Hamas called on other Latin American leaders to sever their countries’ diplomatic relations with Israel, which it described as “a rogue and fascist entity that continues its crimes against our people.”

Historically, Colombia was one of Israel’s closest partners in Latin America. But relations between the two nations have cooled since Gustavo Petro was elected as Colombia’s first left-wing president in 2022.

Petro announced that his government would sever diplomatic relations with Israel starting Thursday, calling Israel’s siege of Gaza a “genocide.” He previously suspended arms purchases from Israel and compared that country’s actions in Gaza to those of Nazi Germany. Hamas said it highly valued Petro’s position.

Weeks after the Hamas attack on southern Israel on October 7, which sparked the current war in Gaza and killed some 1,200 people, Petro recalled the Colombian ambassador to Israel as he criticized the military offensive of the country.

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