Smoke rises during Israel's offensive in the northern Gaza Strip January 14, 2009. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon renewed in Egypt on Wednesday a call for a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel, whose aircraft pounded tunnels used by the group to smuggle arms into the Gaza Strip.  REUTERS/Amir Cohen (GAZA) *** Local Caption ***  JER43_PALESTINIANS-_0114_11.JPG
Smoke rises during Israel's offensive in the northern Gaza Strip on Jan 14 2009.

Fighting continues in Gaza, rockets strike from Lebanon



GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip // Israeli aircraft pounded a cemetery, rocket-launching pads, weapons arsenals and dozens of arms smuggling tunnels in the Gaza Strip, witnesses and the military said today, while militants in Lebanon raised the spectre of a new front by sending three rockets crashing into northern Israel. Israeli police said the rockets from Lebanon landed in open areas near the town of Kiryat Shemona, causing no injuries or damage. Residents of northern Israel were instructed to head to bomb shelters following the second attack from Lebanon in less than a week.

Lebanese officials said the Israeli army fired shells on south Lebanon after the rockets were fired on Israel. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Lebanon's Hizbollah, the Iranian-backed guerrilla group that fought a month-long war with Israel in 2006, denied involvement in last week's attack and speculation focused on small Palestinian groups in Lebanon. The rockets flying across its northern border have fuelled Israel's fears that militants in Lebanon could try to open a second front in solidarity with Gaza's Islamic militant Hamas rulers.

Israel launched an air and ground onslaught against Hamas 19 days ago. Today, the UN chief Ban Ki-moon headed to the region to lend his heft to diplomatic efforts to wrest an end to the violence, which has killed more than 940 Palestinians, half of them civilians, according to Palestinian hospital officials. Thirteen Israelis have also been killed, four of them by rocket fire from Gaza. Mr Ban's first stop on his week-long tour was to be Egypt, which is playing a crucial role in ceasefire efforts.

Israeli military officials have said the talks in Cairo, which they term "decisive," will determine whether Israel moves closer to a truce or widens its offensive to send thousands of reservists into crowded, urban areas where casualties on both sides would likely mount. Israel had planned to send its lead negotiator, Amos Gilad, to Cairo today, but his trip was put off because conditions weren't ripe, defence officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the date of his departure has not been set.

Mr Ban is to meet today with the Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, who launched an initiative with France a week ago aimed at achieving a temporary halt to the fighting to be followed by a permanent ceasefire and arrangements on border security. He will head from there to Jordan, Israel, the Palestinian-controlled West Bank, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria and Kuwait. His itinerary does not include a stop in Gaza.

Israel pressed ahead with its military offensive overnight even as diplomatic efforts advanced. Military planes and helicopter gunships pounded 60 targets overnight, including a police court in Gaza City, rocket-launching sites, gunmen, weapons-production and storage facilities and about 35 weapons smuggling tunnels, the military said. Witnesses also reported an air strike on the house of a militant rocket squad leader.

Palestinians said aircraft also struck the Sheikh Radwan cemetery in Gaza City, destroying tombs and unearthing dozens of bodies. Gaza City residents, too terrified to venture out to the only graveyard in the area with space to dig new graves, have reopened the Sheikh Radwan burial ground to bury their dead. The military had no immediate comment. Early today, Israeli tanks resumed fire at civilian areas, using shells that ignited small fires before dissolving into clouds of white smoke that hung above the city centre, witnesses said. The Israeli military has not confirmed reports that it has improperly used white phosphorous shells, saying only that it uses munitions is in accordance with international law.

Four Palestinians, including at least two militants, were killed and 32 people were wounded in overnight fighting, Gaza, hospital officials said. Fireballs and smoke plumes from Israeli bombing have become a common sight in the territory of 1.4 million people, who are trapped because Israel and Egypt have blockaded border crossings ever since Hamas came to power in June 2007. * AP

Company Profile

Name: HyveGeo
Started: 2023
Founders: Abdulaziz bin Redha, Dr Samsurin Welch, Eva Morales and Dr Harjit Singh
Based: Cambridge and Dubai
Number of employees: 8
Industry: Sustainability & Environment
Funding: $200,000 plus undisclosed grant
Investors: Venture capital and government

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: Sav
Started: 2021
Founder: Purvi Munot
Based: Dubai
Industry: FinTech
Funding: $750,000 as of March 2023
Investors: Angel investors

SPECS

Engine: 2-litre 4-cylinder turbo and 3.6-litre V6
Transmission: Seven-speed automatic
Power: 235hp and 310hp
Torque: 258Nm and 271Nm
Price: From Dh185,100

if you go

The flights Fly Dubai, Air Arabia, Emirates, Etihad, and Royal Jordanian all offer direct, three-and-a-half-hour flights from the UAE to the Jordanian capital Amman. Alternatively, from June Fly Dubai will offer a new direct service from Dubai to Aqaba in the south of the country. See the airlines’ respective sites for varying prices or search on reliable price-comparison site Skyscanner.

The trip 

Jamie Lafferty was a guest of the Jordan Tourist Board. For more information on adventure tourism in Jordan see Visit Jordan. A number of new and established tour companies offer the chance to go caving, rock-climbing, canyoning, and mountaineering in Jordan. Prices vary depending on how many activities you want to do and how many days you plan to stay in the country. Among the leaders are Terhaal, who offer a two-day canyoning trip from Dh845 per person. If you really want to push your limits, contact the Stronger Team. For a more trek-focused trip, KE Adventure offers an eight-day trip from Dh5,300 per person.

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: SmartCrowd
Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

The specs

Engine: 1.8-litre 4-cyl turbo
Power: 190hp at 5,200rpm
Torque: 320Nm from 1,800-5,000rpm
Transmission: Seven-speed dual-clutch auto
Fuel consumption: 6.7L/100km
Price: From Dh111,195
On sale: Now

Living in...

This article is part of a guide on where to live in the UAE. Our reporters will profile some of the country’s most desirable districts, provide an estimate of rental prices and introduce you to some of the residents who call each area home. 

ROUTE TO TITLE

Round 1: Beat Leolia Jeanjean 6-1, 6-2
Round 2: Beat Naomi Osaka 7-6, 1-6, 7-5
Round 3: Beat Marie Bouzkova 6-4, 6-2
Round 4: Beat Anastasia Potapova 6-0, 6-0
Quarter-final: Beat Marketa Vondrousova 6-0, 6-2
Semi-final: Beat Coco Gauff 6-2, 6-4
Final: Beat Jasmine Paolini 6-2, 6-2

The specs

Engine: Twin electric motors and 105kWh battery pack
Power: 619hp
Torque: 1,015Nm
Transmission: Single-speed auto
Touring range: Up to 561km
On sale: Q3 or Q4 2022
Price: From Dh635,000

Dunki

Director: Rajkumar Hirani 

Starring: Shah Rukh Khan, Taapsee Pannu, Vikram Kochhar and Anil Grover

Rating: 4/5

Courses at Istituto Marangoni, Dubai

Undergraduate courses
Interior Design; Product Design; Visual Design; Fashion Design & Accessories; Fashion Styling & Creative Direction; Fashion Business; Foundation in Fashion; Foundation in Design
Professional courses
Fashion e-Commerce & Digital Marketing; Fashion Entrepreneurship; Fashion Luxury Retail and Visual Merchandising
Short courses
Fashion design; Fashion Image & Styling; Fashion Trend Forecasting; Interior Design; Digital Art in Fashion
More information is at www.istitutomarangoni.com

In-demand jobs and monthly salaries
  • Technology expert in robotics and automation: Dh20,000 to Dh40,000 
  • Energy engineer: Dh25,000 to Dh30,000 
  • Production engineer: Dh30,000 to Dh40,000 
  • Data-driven supply chain management professional: Dh30,000 to Dh50,000 
  • HR leader: Dh40,000 to Dh60,000 
  • Engineering leader: Dh30,000 to Dh55,000 
  • Project manager: Dh55,000 to Dh65,000 
  • Senior reservoir engineer: Dh40,000 to Dh55,000 
  • Senior drilling engineer: Dh38,000 to Dh46,000 
  • Senior process engineer: Dh28,000 to Dh38,000 
  • Senior maintenance engineer: Dh22,000 to Dh34,000 
  • Field engineer: Dh6,500 to Dh7,500
  • Field supervisor: Dh9,000 to Dh12,000
  • Field operator: Dh5,000 to Dh7,000
A QUIET PLACE

Starring: Lupita Nyong'o, Joseph Quinn, Djimon Hounsou

Director: Michael Sarnoski

Rating: 4/5

Temple numbers

Expected completion: 2022

Height: 24 meters

Ground floor banquet hall: 370 square metres to accommodate about 750 people

Ground floor multipurpose hall: 92 square metres for up to 200 people

First floor main Prayer Hall: 465 square metres to hold 1,500 people at a time

First floor terrace areas: 2,30 square metres  

Temple will be spread over 6,900 square metres

Structure includes two basements, ground and first floor 

Married Malala

Malala Yousafzai is enjoying married life, her father said.

The 24-year-old married Pakistan cricket executive Asser Malik last year in a small ceremony in the UK.

Ziauddin Yousafzai told The National his daughter was ‘very happy’ with her husband.

Bombshell

Director: Jay Roach

Stars: Nicole Kidman, Charlize Theron, Margot Robbie 

Four out of five stars 

MATCH INFO

Europa League final

Who: Marseille v Atletico Madrid
Where: Parc OL, Lyon, France
When: Wednesday, 10.45pm kick off (UAE)
TV: BeIN Sports

The specs: 2018 Nissan Altima


Price, base / as tested: Dh78,000 / Dh97,650

Engine: 2.5-litre in-line four-cylinder

Power: 182hp @ 6,000rpm

Torque: 244Nm @ 4,000rpm

Transmission: Continuously variable tranmission

Fuel consumption, combined: 7.6L / 100km

ON TRACK

The Dubai Metaverse Assembly will host three main tracks:

Educate: Consists of more than 10 in-depth sessions on the metaverse

Inspire: Will showcase use cases of the metaverse in tourism, logistics, retail, education and health care

Contribute: Workshops for metaverse foresight and use-case reviews

If you go

The Flights

Emirates and Etihad fly direct to Johannesburg from Dubai and Abu Dhabi respectively. Economy return tickets cost from Dh2,650, including taxes.

The trip

Worldwide Motorhoming Holidays (worldwidemotorhomingholidays.co.uk) operates fly-drive motorhome holidays in eight destinations, including South Africa. Its 14-day Kruger and the Battlefields itinerary starts from Dh17,500, including campgrounds, excursions, unit hire and flights. Bobo Campers has a range of RVs for hire, including the 4-berth Discoverer 4 from Dh600 per day.

GOLF’S RAHMBO

- 5 wins in 22 months as pro
- Three wins in past 10 starts
- 45 pro starts worldwide: 5 wins, 17 top 5s
- Ranked 551th in world on debut, now No 4 (was No 2 earlier this year)
- 5th player in last 30 years to win 3 European Tour and 2 PGA Tour titles before age 24 (Woods, Garcia, McIlroy, Spieth)

The years Ramadan fell in May

1987

1954

1921

1888