PH welcomes Israel-Hamas truce

The Philippine government has welcomed the truce between Israeli forces and the Hamas militant group after days of relentless aerial exchanges that killed hundreds and injured thousands on both sides.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said the Philippines also acknowledges the efforts of several countries, including Egypt and the United States, in facilitating the agreement.

The truce took effect after Egypt and Qatar brokered an agreement between the two parties to halt the bloodshed.

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said  Israeli and Hamas leaders bear a responsibility beyond the restoration of calm “to start a serious dialogue to address the root causes of the conflict.”

Guterres said Gaza is an integral part of the future Palestinian state and no effort should be spared to bring about “real national reconciliation that ends the division.” He underscored the importance of stabilizing the ceasefire and establishing a “robust program of humanitarian aid and recovery for Gaza.”

Reports said at least 232 Palestinians, including 65 children, died in the Israeli airstrikes. Some 12 people, including two children, meanwhile, were killed by Hamas  rocket fires towards Israeli populated.

DFA said so far no Filipino has been reported among the fatalities and injured. Yjere are thousands of Filipinos in Israel.

Deployment of Filipino workers to Israel has temporarily been suspended but processing of papers of those qualified continues.