India-Israel Partnership Aims to Tackle Construction Labour Shortage Amid Gaza Conflict

India-Israel Partnership Aims to Tackle Construction Labour Shortage Amid Gaza Conflict

Israel-Gaza conflict enters tenth month amid hopes for ceasefire, hostage release

Israel’s Population and Immigration Authority is collaborating with the Indian government to facilitate the recruitment of construction workers from India to address a labour shortage exacerbated by the ongoing genocide in Gaza.

On Sunday, the CEO of the Population Authority hosted a delegation from India, including the CEO of India’s National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) and his team, to advance this initiative.

The meeting included Yehuda Morgenstern, Director General of Israel’s Ministry of Construction and Housing, Moshe Nakash, Head of the Foreign Workers Administration at the Population Authority, and representatives from various ministries.

Currently, Israel employs over 40,000 construction workers, primarily from China, Moldova, and India.

The Israeli offensive in Gaza, which has resulted in nearly 500,000 people facing “catastrophic” hunger, entered into its tenth month on Sunday while deadly air strikes continued.

According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, the assault on Gaza, which began on October 7, 2023, has so far killed 38,098 and injured 87,705, most of whom are women and children.

The offensive has uprooted 90 per cent of Gaza’s population, destroyed much of its housing and other infrastructure, and left almost 500,000 people enduring “catastrophic” hunger, UN agencies say.

Meanwhile, as the Israel-Gaza conflict enters its tenth month, with ongoing deaths and destruction, Egypt is set to host Israeli and U.S. delegations for discussions on unresolved issues in a potential hostage and ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas, according to Egypt’s state-linked al-Qahera News TV, citing a high-level source.

Last week, Mossad chief David Barnea travelled to Doha to meet with Qatar’s Prime Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani, sparking widespread speculation about a possible ceasefire and hostage deal between Israel and Hamas.

However, negotiations hit a snag over the weekend as Israel reportedly introduced new demands, causing delays in reaching an agreement. It remains unclear whether Hamas will agree to these new conditions.

Earlier reports suggested that Hamas, under pressure from sympathetic countries, had accepted Israel’s latest position. However, Friday’s meeting saw Israel presenting additional demands, complicating the negotiation process.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah launched approximately 50 rockets into northern Israel, igniting fires and wounding one person seriously with shrapnel. Two others were injured by a Hezbollah anti-tank missile in the Western Galilee. Hezbollah claimed the attack was retaliation for Israel’s assassination of their operative, Meitam Mustafa Al Atar, on Saturday. In response, the Israeli Air Force struck Hezbollah targets in southern Lebanon, with reports of airstrikes in the city of Tyre.

The international community is increasingly urgent in its calls for an end to the conflict, fearing a broader confrontation between Israel and Hezbollah. A ceasefire in Gaza could potentially ease these tensions.

Israeli Defence Minister Yoav Gallant stated that a hostage deal with Hamas would not restrict Israel’s military actions in the north unless a separate agreement is reached with Hezbollah.

Meanwhile, Gaza reported the death of Labor Ministry CEO Ehab al-Ghussein in an Israeli strike on Gaza City. Hamas’ military wing spokesperson, Abu Obaida, claimed the organisation has recruited hundreds of new members and remains militarily strong, asserting that the ongoing conflict will inspire new generations of Palestinian fighters.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, the conflict has resulted in at least 38,153 Palestinian deaths and 87,828 injuries since it began on October 7, 2023.

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