Hamas and Israel indicate willingness to extend ceasefire deal

Hamas announced in a statement on Sunday local time that it is seeking to extend the truce should serious efforts be made to increase the number of Palestinian detainees released from Israel.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that he told US President Joe Biden that Israel will resume its campaign in Gaza with full force once the temporary truce comes to an end.

However, Mr Netanyahu also said he would welcome extending it if it facilitated the release of 10 additional hostages every day, as agreed under the original Qatari-brokered deal. 

Gaza Hospital besieged, medics say patients unable to evacuate

While Israel denied firing on the largest hospital, Al Shifa, saying people can evacuate safely. 

Gaza health authorities said on Friday that at least 11,078 Palestinians, including 4,506 children, have died since Israel launched its retaliation for the October 7 terrorist attack by Hamas. 

About 2,700 people have been reported missing and are thought to be possibly trapped or dead under the rubble. 

Israel says about 1,200 Israelis were killed in the October 7 attack, a figure revised down from the previously reported 1,400. 

PNG embassy in Israel closed

This is due to the current situation where Israel is in a state of war since the attacks conducted against it by the Palestinian group, Hamas, on 7 October 2023.

Two officers of the Department of Foreign Affairs who were assigned to set up the Embassy following its opening in September this year, departed Israel on 17 October 2023, in view of the security concerns there.

Israel prepares to evacuate residents

Now — they are makeshift morgues for victims of the Israel-Gaza war. 

Health officials in the Gaza Strip have resorted to storing the bodies of Palestinians killed by Israeli air strikes in ice cream freezer trucks because moving them to hospitals is too risky and cemeteries are short of space.

"The hospital morgue can only take 10 bodies, so we have brought in ice cream freezers from the ice cream factories in order to store the huge numbers of [dead]," said Dr Yasser Ali of the Shuhada Al-Aqsa hospital in Deir Al-Balah.

PM Marape condemns attack on Israel

“In a world where the modern family of nations are coming together under the United Nations charter and rules on human rights, any issues we may have with each other must be resolved through peaceful means.

“Papua New Guinea has shown this since 2001 when we came together to sit at the table in the Bougainville Peace Process. We settled on a Peace Agreement and we are now working through this process to resolve our issues peacefully.

Israel and Hamas at War After Surprise Attack

The attack was done after dozens of Hamas militants broke out of the blockaded Gaza Strip and into nearby Israeli towns, killing hundreds and abducting others in an unprecedented operation.

Hamas said it had taken dozens of military and civilian hostages back to Gaza.

The surprise early morning attack — which was backed by a barrage of rockets fired from within Gaza — killed at least 250 people and wounded more than 1,500, according to Israel's national rescue service, during a major Jewish holiday on Saturday local time.

Lelang cautions Gov’t

Prime Minister Marape formally opened PNG’s embassy in Jerusalem, making PNG one of just five countries in the world to do so.

Almost all foreign embassies are in Tel Aviv, apart from the US, Honduras, Kosovo and Guatemala.

Lelang said Jerusalem is a disputed territory between Palestine and Israel and opening an embassy there may "not be a wise move".

“While we recognize that the government of the day has the authority to open our foreign mission there, there is a reason why the rest of the world have decided not to move their embassies from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.”

PM Marape embarks on historic visit to Israel

This marks his inaugural journey to the Holy Land, and his primary objective is to foster substantial development collaborations between Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Israel.

The pivotal moment of this Official Visit will be the inauguration of the new Papua New Guinea Embassy in Jerusalem. This symbolic gesture underscores the strengthening ties between the two nations and highlights the historical significance of the occasion.

Historic Agriculture Agreement to be signed

Minister for Agriculture, Aiye Tambua, said this will be a historical, and first ever formal agreement to be signed between the two countries to target technical training for young Papua New Guinean graduates in agriculture, research and related fields.

The agreement will also capture the field of research in all potential agriculture related disciplines with the department and especially the National Agriculture Research Institute (NARI).

Israel tries to contain avian flu outbreak after 5000 wild cranes die

More than 5000 migratory cranes have already died at the Hula Nature Reserve, which Environment Minister Tamar Zandberg called "the worst blow to wildlife" in Israel's history.

Local farmers were also being forced to cull half a million chickens, prompting fears of a possible egg shortage.

So far no transmission of the A(H5N1) virus to humans has been reported.

However, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett met his national security adviser and other experts on Monday to discuss efforts to stop that from happening.