Truce between Israel, Palestinian militants holds; Gaza crossings reopen
An Egypt-brokered ceasefire to halt a flare-up in fighting by Israel and Palestinian militants was holding on Monday, with crossings into the besieged Gaza Strip also reopening.
An Israeli army spokesperson said no new rockets had been fired at Israel from the Gaza Strip since the ceasefire to end three days of violence that Palestinians said left more than 40 dead took effect late Sunday, reports dpa news agency.
The Israeli army had not attacked any new targets in the coastal enclave, the spokesperson added.
Israel on Monday also announced the re-opening of border crossings into the Mediterranean coastal strip for humanitarian deliveries.
The Israeli military had launched the “Breaking Dawn” military operation on August 5 with airstrikes against Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip.
Two military chiefs were killed during the operation.
The group, closely linked to Iran, is classified as a terrorist organization by the US and European Union.
Israel Defense Forces said the group had been planning a major attack along the border involving anti-tank missiles and so pre-emptive action was taken by launching a wave of strikes against Islamic Jihad positions in Gaza.
Tensions began to rise with the arrest of an Islamic Jihad leader in the West Bank, Bassem Saadi, on August 1.
Since August 5, Palestinian militants have fired more than 1,000 rockets at Israeli settlements, according to the Israeli military, with some 200 hundred of them falling short and hitting the Gaza Strip.
In Gaza, 44 people have been killed and 360 injured, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.
Among the dead were said to be 15 children and four women.
The Palestinians blamed the Israeli strikes. Israel said misguided jihadi rockets had caused the civilian casualties.
There have been no reported deaths in Israel, with the Iron Dome defence system intercepting most of the rockets.
After assessing the security situation, the Erez border crossing and the Kerem Shalom goods crossing were open again, Israel’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) announced Monday.
The first fuel tanks and humanitarian supplies passed through the border in the morning, according to a spokesperson.
The power supply in Gaza had been reduced from 12 to four hours on August 6 due to a lack of fuel. The Palestinian Health Ministry had warned of major impacts on medical services.
Around 2 million people live in very poor conditions in the territory on the Mediterranean Sea.
Hamas seized power in 2007, prompting Israel to tighten a blockade of Gaza, a move that is also supported by neighbouring Egypt.
Both Israel and Egypt justify the measure with security interests.
Rahul Gandhi heckled by Khalistani supporters at San Francisco event, ‘Next will be Modi on June 22’, threatens SFJ chief Gurpatwant Singh Pannun
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who is on a 10-day visit to the United States of America was heckled during an event in San Francisco on Tuesday (local time US). A group of Khalistani supporters suddenly started raising slogans against him interrupting his speech. Slogans against the Gandhi family were raised in connection with the 1984 Sikh massacre that took place in India.
Soon after the incident took place, Sikhs for Justice (SFJ) chief Gurpatwant Singh Pannun shared a video on social media showing the visuals of the event when the Khalistani supporters protested against the Congress leader.
Pannun threatened Gandhi and even PM Modi
In an audio clip attached to the video, Pannun threatened Gandhi saying that wherever he would travel and address the masses all over US, he will be facing such resistance from the Sikhs in the US. In another shocking warning, Pannun threatened PM Modi that even he’d face the same conditions during his state visit. “Next will be Modi on June 22,” said Pannun in the audio clip.
Pannun threatened Gandhi and even PM Modi
In an audio clip attached to the video, Pannun referred to Gandhi as trader of ‘Sikh genocide.’ He further threatened Gandhi saying that wherever he would travel and address the masses all over US, he will be facing such resistance from the Sikhs in the US. In another shocking warning, Pannun threatened PM Modi that even he’d face the same conditions during his state visit. “Next will be Modi on June 22,” said Pannun in the audio clip.
Gandhi reached San Francisco earlier on Tuesday
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi reached San Francisco on Tuesday for a three-city US tour during which he will interact with the Indian expatriates and meet American lawmakers.
He was received at the airport by Indian Overseas Congress chairperson Sam Pitroda and other members of the IOC. Rahul Gandhi had to wait for two hours at the airport for immigration clearance, party sources said.
PM Modi’s state visit to the USA
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also set to embark on an official state visit to the United States on June 22. The Ministry of External Affairs announced that PM Modi will be hosted by US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden at a state dinner at the White House. This visit highlights the diplomatic ties between India and the US.
Bulgarian President asks coalition to form govt
Bulgarian President Rumen Radev asked the We Continue the Change-Democratic Bulgaria (PP-DB) coalition, the country’s second largest force in Parliament, to form a government.
Radev handed the exploratory mandate to Nikolai Denkov, the PP-DB’s nominee for Prime Minister, reports Xinhua news agency.
“In the coming days, we will be negotiating with the other parliamentary forces in order to be able to form a regular government,” said Denkov, whose coalition holds 64 seats in the 240-member Parliament.
“I hope this sincere effort of ours will be supported,” Denkov said.
Denkov has seven days to propose a government, which will then need the backing of parliament in a simple majority vote.
Radev first entrusted on May 15 the task of forming a new government to the GERB-UDF coalition, the country’s largest political force, which holds 69 seats, but it failed to secure a parliamentary majority.
Should the PP-DB also fail to form a government, the president shall entrust the task to one of the four minor parliamentary groups.
If no agreements can be reached, the President will call new parliamentary elections.
Opening bell: Markets open in green amid positive global cues; Sensex at 62,889.90, Nifty at 18,609.90
The markets on Monday opened higher with Sensex at 62,889.90, up by 388.21 points and Nifty was at 18,609.90 with a gain of 110.55 points. Mahindra and Mahindra, TCS, HDFC, IndusInd Bank and Wipro were the top gainers in the morning session.
The stocks of Adani Transmission, Rail Vikas Nigam, IRCTC, Torrent Power and NHPC will be in focus as the companies are announcing the results for the last quarter today.
Markets on Friday
Thanks to increased buying by Foreign Institutional Investors, Sensex surged 623 points to end the week at 62,496. Nifty also went up by 0.94 per cent to hit 18,495 points at close, buoyed by a rebound for global markets and gains made by US stocks.
Wall Street shares on Friday after being on the lower end rose sharply as the US debt ceiling progressed and chip stocks gained for a second straight day due to optimism surrounding AI. The Nasdaq Composite rose by 2.19 per cent to 12,975.69, S&P 500 closed higher at 4,205.45 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose to 33,093.34.
With the US debt negotiations reaching closer to a deal the Asian markets on Monday were in green. Singapore’s SGX Nifty saw a gain of 159 points at 18,707, South Korea’s KOSPI was comparatively flat with a gain of 4.12 points at 2,558.81 and Japan’s Nikkei 225 was in the green with a gain of 159 points at 31,330.63. However, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was at 18,723.72 with a drop of 23.20 points.
Oil prices on Monday were were higher after as United States leaders reached a tentative decision to avoid debt default. Brent crude futures went up by 39 cents to $77.34 per barrel and US West Texas Intermediate crude was at $73.12 per barrel with a gain of 45 cents.
Indian rupee on Monday opened flat at 82.58 per dollar against Friday’s close of 82.57.
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