France is set to send its Dixmude helicopter carrier to provide medical aid to the war-torn region of Gaza in the eastern Mediterranean, announced the office of French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday.
The Dixmude will depart at the beginning of the week and arrive in Egypt in the coming days, according to Macron’s office. Additionally, a charter flight carrying over 10 tons of medical supplies is scheduled for early in the week. France will also contribute to the European effort by sending medical equipment on European flights on November 23 and 30.
The French government is mobilizing all available resources to facilitate the evacuation of wounded and critically ill children from the Gaza Strip to French hospitals. Macron mentioned that up to 50 children could be transported to France for treatment if necessary.
Israel has pledged to take down Hamas, the ruling authority in Gaza, following an attack carried out by the Palestinian militant group on October 7, which was considered the deadliest in the country’s history. According to Israeli officials, the attack resulted in the deaths of around 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and approximately 240 individuals were taken hostage.
In response, Israel’s military has caused the deaths of over 13,000 people in Gaza, the majority of whom were civilians, including more than 5,000 children, as reported by Hamas officials.
Macron expressed concerns about the high number of civilian casualties to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, emphasizing the necessity to distinguish terrorists from the general population and calling for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.
Macron has also been in contact with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to discuss ongoing negotiations to secure the release of hostages held by Hamas in Gaza. French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu visited Qatar on Saturday to participate in mediation efforts.
Macron and al-Sisi agreed on the importance of increasing the number of trucks entering Gaza and coordinating efforts to provide humanitarian aid and medical treatment for the wounded, according to Macron’s office.
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