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UN to declare both Israel and Hamas are violating children's rights in armed conflict

The U.N. secretary-general will tell the Security Council next week that both Israel and Hamas are violating children's rights and leaving them exposed to danger in their war to eliminate each other.

The secretary-general annually makes a global list of states and militias that are menacing children and threatening them. Parties on the list have ranged from the Kachin Independence Army in Myanmar to — last year — Russia during its war with Ukraine.

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US circulates Gaza truce resolution at UN, but Israel privately objects

The United States has circulated a revised Security Council draft resolution that says a permanent cease-fire in the Gaza must be agreed to by Israel and Hamas.

It also spells out a three-phase plan to end the eight-month war and start the reconstruction of the devastated Gaza Strip that it says Israel has accepted and calls on Hamas to accept.

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Yemen Houthis detain aid workers, including UN staff

Yemen's Iran-backed Houthi rebels have detained more than a dozen aid workers, including United Nations staff, in an apparently coordinated sweep, a diplomatic source and a Yemeni NGO said Friday.

At least 18 Yemeni aid workers were kidnapped in four rebel-held parts of the war-torn country, the Yemeni Mayyun Organization for Human Rights said, listing 10 workers from U.N. agencies.

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Israeli strikes kill at least 18 in central Gaza a day after attack on UN-run school

Palestinian health officials say at least 18 people were killed, including children, in Israeli airstrikes overnight across Central Gaza.

Strikes hit the Nuseirat and Maghazi refugee camps and Deir al-Balah and Zawaiyda towns, they said Friday. The bodies were taken to the al-Aqsa hospital where an Associated Press journalist counted them.

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Hamas says Biden Gaza ceasefire plan 'just words'

A senior Hamas official has said that U.S. President Joe Biden's proposed Gaza ceasefire deal was "just words" and the Palestinian militant group had not received any written commitments related to a truce.

Biden presented last week what he labelled an Israeli three-phase plan that would end the conflict, free all hostages and lead to the reconstruction of the devastated Palestinian territory without Hamas in power.

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Netanyahu to address US Congress on July 24

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to address a joint meeting of Congress on July 24, setting the stage for what is expected to be a contentious speech at a crucial moment for the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

Congressional leaders confirmed the date of the address late Thursday after formally inviting Netanyahu to come speak before lawmakers last week. It is the most recent show of wartime support for the longtime ally despite mounting political divisions over Israel's military assault on Hamas in Gaza.

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Attacks on US-linked businesses rattle Baghdad as anger over Gaza war surges

A dozen masked men jump out of two SUVs and a white pickup and storm a KFC in Baghdad, smashing everything in sight before fleeing the scene. A few days earlier, similar violence played out at Lee's Famous Recipe Chicken and Chili House — all American brands popular in the Iraqi capital.

Though no one was seriously hurt, the recent attacks — apparently orchestrated by supporters of Iran-backed, anti-American militias in Iraq — reflect surging anger against the United States, Israel's top ally, over the war in Gaza.

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Egypt says 'positive signs' from Hamas on Gaza truce

Egypt has received "positive signs" from Hamas over a proposed Gaza truce and hostage release deal, state-linked Al-Qahera News said Thursday citing a high-level source.

"Hamas leaders have informed us that they are studying the truce proposal seriously and positively," it quoted the unnamed source as saying, adding that Hamas was expected to provide a response "in the coming days".

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Syria's Kurds delay controversial local elections

Syria's Kurdish authorities said Thursday they were delaying controversial municipal elections which prompted threats from arch-foe Turkey and concerns from their main ally the United States.

The elections, originally scheduled for June 11 and now postponed "until at least August", would be the first to extend to all seven regions under the semi-autonomous region's control, home to both Arabs and Kurds, since Syria's fragmentation during its civil war.

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Many leaders are more interested in power than helping end conflict, UN says

Leaders in many conflict areas are more interested in power and political rivalries than in listening to the needs of their people, improving their lives and ending the fighting, the United Nations humanitarian chief told The Associated Press.

In an interview Wednesday, Martin Griffiths said humanitarian workers in conflict-torn countries see the consequences of this failure every day when they often put their lives on the line to help millions of people who are hungry, displaced and caught in violence. That has been brought into sharp relief in Gaza, where over 200 relief workers have been killed.

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