People of faith around the world continue to pray for a permanent truce between Israel and Hamas. During this week’s pause in the fighting, groups were able to deliver aid to people in Gaza. Many decried the humanitarian impact of the conflict. A Catholic Relief Services official described the situation as “a complete catastrophe.” Many religious leaders continued to protest the large number of civilian casualties. In Washington, on Tisha B’Av, the Jewish day of mourning, activists held a vigil for those on both sides who were killed. The gathering urged an end to the war. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Hamas should be held accountable for what he called the tragic loss of civilian lives. He said Israel’s actions were justified and proportional.
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