Gaza’s 37 million tonnes of bomb-laden debris could require 14 years to clear

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According to a top UN demining specialist, Israel’s war in Gaza has left behind 37 million tonnes of debris, much of it riddled with unexploded bombs that could take more than ten years to remove.
Pehr Lodhammar, the former head of the United Nations Mine Action Service for Iraq, stated during a press conference that nearly seven months into the conflict, there is an average of 300 kg of rubble per square meter of land in Gaza.
With 100 trucks, “we are talking about 14 years of work… to remove it based on the current [amount] of debris in Gaza,” the speaker stated. He noted that it was impossible to predict how long clearance might take once the fighting ended.

The ferocity of Israel’s bombing campaign in Gaza, which has left vast parts of the strip in ruins, has led to accusations of “domicide.” According to Lodhammar, residential buildings made up 65 percent of the structures damaged in Gaza.

 

Gaza's 37 million tonnes of bomb-laden debris could require 14 years to clear
Gaza’s 37 million tonnes of bomb-laden debris could require 14 years to clear

It will take time and be risky work to clear and rebuild them due to the possibility of shells, rockets, or other weapons hidden in damaged or destroyed buildings. Lodhammar estimated that roughly 10% of weapons were not supposed to detonate and had to be taken out by demining crews.
In an effort to restart the deadlocked negotiations on a ceasefire and hostage release agreement, an Egyptian delegation headed by Abbas Kamel, the head of Egypt’s security services, traveled to Israel and spoke with their Israeli counterparts.

Alongside its attempts to end the conflict through diplomacy, Egypt has issued strong warnings about an impending Israeli attack on Rafah, the only area of Gaza where Israel has not yet dispatched ground forces.
More than half of Gaza’s inhabitants, most of whom were displaced by violence elsewhere, finds refuge in the border town, which also serves as the principal entrance route for humanitarian aid into the strip during an impending famine.
Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, the president of Egypt, stated last week that an attack there would have “catastrophic effects” on regional peace and security in addition to Palestinian victims. An Israeli offensive in Rafah, according to Cairo, would be a violation of the long-standing peace agreement between Egypt and Israel.

Four Hamas battalions, according to Israeli officials, have taken up residence among civilians in Rafah and need to be eliminated. In what appears to be preparation for the offensive, troops, tanks, and armored vehicles have gathered in the southern part of the nation.
The intensity of airstrikes on Rafah has also increased recently. A baby girl who had been delivered from her dying mother’s womb was one of the most recent victims.
When an airstrike struck the family’s house on Saturday night, Sabreen al-Rouh was the only one who survived. Her mother, Sabreen al Sakani, passed away in a hospital not long after her daughter was delivered via cesarean section, and her father, Shukri, and three-year-old sister, Malak, were slain instantly.

“I and other doctors tried to save her, but she died,” said Mohammad Salama, the chief of the emergency newborn section at Emirati hospital, in a statement to Reuters. It was a really trying and painful day for me personally.Because of the immaturity of her immune system and immature respiratory system at birth, she passed away. She became a martyr and joined her family.
According to Gaza’s health authorities, 34,000 Palestinians have died as a result of Israeli bombings in almost seven months, the bulk of whom were women and children. In reaction to the attack on October 7, when Hamas killed 1,200 people—mostly civilians—and kidnapped 250 more, Israel declared war.

According to an Egyptian official who spoke with Associated Press, Egypt’s Kamel was offering the Israelis a “new vision” for a sustained ceasefire in Gaza.
Limited hostages would be released during the first phase of the ceasefire in exchange for the release of Palestinian detainees detained in Israel and the permission for a sizable number of Palestinians to return to their homes in the northern part of the strip. After then, discussions for a bigger agreement to end the war would go on.

As the war drags on and the toll from weapons, starvation, and a lack of medical care rises, there has been an increasing amount of international pressure for a compromise, with Israel and Hamas blaming one another of being uncooperative.

However, Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition’s far-right members within Israel have been pressuring him to send troops into Rafah.
Itamar Ben-Gvir, the minister of security, stated on X that Hamas is fearful of a Rafah operation, which is why Egypt proposed this. And he said, “Rafah now!”
According to the Pentagon, US forces had started building a floating pier for humanitarian goods with the goal of accelerating the delivery of much-needed food into Gaza.

However, concerns about security and supply delivery continue to impede the intricate plan; detractors have warned that the project runs the risk of turning into a “smokescreen” for the impending invasion of Rafah.

 

 

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