Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI) Commander General Agus Subiyanto said that the Australian and Singaporean militaries had expressed their keenness to join in the UN peacekeeping operation in the Gaza Strip.

He welcomed Australia and Singapore's calls for the joint UN peacekeeping operation in Gaza while speaking to journalists on the sidelines of his meeting with ulemas from the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) in Jakarta on Friday.

Interstate cooperation, especially among countries from the Asian region, is highly necessary to end the relentless conflict in Gaza, he said.

He, however, did not provide further details regarding the potential cooperation between Indonesia, Australia, and Singapore's defense forces for the peacekeeping mission.

Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi recently said that Indonesia can send its peacekeeping forces to the Gaza Strip, provided it is authorized by a United Nations (UN) mandate.

General Agus revealed that one of the TNI units that will be deployed to the Palestinian enclave for the UN mission will be the engineering battalion, as its personnel could help rebuild destroyed homes and public facilities, such as schools, hospitals, and houses of worship.

As reported earlier, anticipating a need for UN peacekeepers in Gaza, the TNI has prepared 1,394 personnel for duties such as ensuring security, reconstructing public facilities, and providing medical services.

General Agus also highlighted the TNI's readiness to deliver further humanitarian supplies to Gaza, including sending a hospital ship, provided that a ceasefire is in place and the Indonesian military receives a UN mandate to do so.

A fresh armed conflict erupted between Palestine and Israel following a surprise attack by Hamas on Israel early in the morning of October 7, 2023.

Prior to the assault by Palestinian liberation fighters in Israel, Tel Aviv continued its closure of Gaza crossings.

In response to the unprecedented surprise attack, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared war on Hamas. Since the war began, the Israeli armed forces have killed at least 37,266 Palestinian civilians and injured some 85,102 others as of June 15, according to Al Jazeera.

Al Jazeera reported that many of those killed in Gaza are women and children. The Israeli aggression has also triggered a humanitarian catastrophe.

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Translator: Walda M, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Anton Santoso
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