Israel-Palestine war: Countries are rushing to evacuate their nationals as thousands of foreigners find themselves stuck in Israel and across the Palestinian territories amid an all-out war between Israel Defence Forces and the militant group Hamas.
India, the United States of America, Canada and several other countries launched operations to repatriate their citizens as air strikes in the war-hit region continued to kill thousands on both sides.
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According to the latest reports, at least 3,200 people have been killed on both sides since Hamas launched the bloodiest assault on Israel since the 1973 Arab-Israeli war.
Here’s a full overview of the repatriation process being carried out by several countries:
India’s ‘Operation Ajay’
India was one of the first countries to proactively evacuate their citizens and tourists amid the Israel-Palestine war. The Indian government on Wednesday launched ‘Operation Ajay’ and so far managed to bring back a total of 447 Indian nationals in two batches via chartered flights – one from Tel Aviv and another from Ben Gurion.
Meanwhile, the Indian Embassy in Tel Aviv has announced two special flights on Saturday to further facilitate more Indians wanting to leave the country amidst the Israel-Hamas conflict.
The first flight is expected to leave at 5:00 pm local time and can carry 230 passengers. The second flight is scheduled at 11:00 pm local time and can carry 330 passengers.
United States of America
As 22 US citizens have already been killed in Israel amid the war, The US State Department has started offering charter flights to help Americans leave Israel from October 13.
The first US flight evacuating American citizens out of war-torn Israel landed in Greece on Friday, a State Department official confirmed.
Canada launched an operation to evacuate their citizens on October 12 amid Israel-Palestine war. The first two Canadian Armed Forces evacuation flights left Israel Thursday airlifting an estimated 281 Canadian citizens and their families.
The first flight carrying 128 passengers left Tel Aviv Thursday afternoon, and landed safely in Athens, while the second carrying 153 passengers, is expected to land safely later this evening, according to senior government officials.
The first flight carrying British nationals left Israel on Friday night after several failed attempts to evacuate its citizens amid the escalating conflict in the region.
The first RAF flight carried passengers from Israel to Cyprus last night. More such flights are expected to be scheduled.
The Australian government organised a special flight from Tel Aviv to London on Friday to bring back its citizens amid the war. Another flight is set to reach Israel on Sunday.
German airline Condor is planning two special flights with a capacity of just under 500 passengers in total to evacuate German citizens from the Jordanian city of Aqaba near the Israeli border on October 15.
Ukraine’s foreign ministry said that they will be sending the first evacuation flight to Romania on Saturday. “About 200 Ukrainians had asked to be evacuated from the Gaza Strip, but it was too dangerous to do so for now,” Nikolenko said as quoted by Reuters.
Italy arranged for seven flights on Tuesday and Wednesday as part of efforts to repatriate about 900 Italian citizens from Israel, the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. It has successfully repatriated around 900 of its citizens between October 10 and 11.
The Mexican Army is carrying out humanitarian flights aimed at bringing home nationals, the government said. The latest flight bringing home Mexicans from war-hit Israel landed on Thursday.