ISRAEL-PALESTINE ESCALATION

06/2024 (Day-253)

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Disclaimer: Independent Press takes utmost care to accurately and responsibly report ongoing developments on the Israel-Palestine conflict. However, we cannot independently verify the authenticity of all statements, photos and videos.

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  • At least 37,296 people have been killed and 85,197 wounded in Israel’s war on Gaza since October 7.
  • The revised death toll in Israel from the Hamas-led attacks stands at 1,139, with dozens of people still held captive in Gaza.
  • It is unclear whether Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defence Minister Yoav Gallant knew of the ‘tactical pause’ announced by the army on Sunday morning.
  • Palestinians in Gaza, occupied East Jerusalem marked Eid al-Adha, despite the violence and destruction.
  • The Israeli army burned and demolished dozens of homes in Rafah after an attack by al-Qassam Brigades fighters killed eight Israeli soldiers.
  • Israel killed at least 28 Palestinians in bombings of three homes in Gaza City.
  • UNRWA warns that 50,000 children in Gaza are acutely malnourished and require immediate treatment.

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Israeli military’s announced ‘tactical pause’ causes domestic ‘firestorm’ 

Al Jazeera is reporting from outside Israel because it has been banned by the Israeli government. 

The Israeli military came out this morning with a statement saying there is going to be a “tactical pause”, essentially during daylight hours, from the Karem Abu Salem crossing towards the European Hospital, just north of Rafah. The suggestion is that this is some sort of gift to allow more aid to get through.

Then, we heard the defence minister and the prime minister had not heard about the pause. The military then said fighting will actually continue in Rafah and [the area the pause applies to] is just a particularly small route. So it’s not really giving a lot to the Palestinians or giving much extra humanitarian aid that’s much needed.

The announcement has set off a predictable firestorm, particularly from the Israeli far right who keep Netanyahu in power, including Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich. Some of their far-right views are not that far from those held by a lot of the Israeli population.

Ben-Gvir has instructed his police not to stop protesters attacking convoys going into Gaza. Around 70 percent of Israelis in recent polling don’t support aid going into Gaza.

Questions grow around Israel’s ‘tactical pause’

However, as reports come out about the defense minister and PM Netanyahu being unaware of the pause, it remains unclear if the humanitarian passage was agreed on and, if so, how it would work to help get aid to the rest of Gaza.

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Israel’s Smotrich weighs in on ‘tactical pause’

In a post on X, Smotrich claimed that much of the aid getting into Gaza, where nearly all people are food insecure, is serving Hamas, thus prolonging the war. The military’s announcement of a “tactical pause” for humanitarian aid, he said, shows it is wrongly prioritizing international legitimacy over “victory”.

Smotrich said the only way to win the war is to occupy Gaza and impose a temporary military government until Hamas is rooted out.

Soldiers’ deaths dominates headlines in Israel

There has been blanket coverage in Israeli media of the deaths of 10 Israeli soldiers… much more coverage of course than that of Palestinians. It is a reminder to Israelis of how dangerous the war in Gaza is.

There are Israeli voices – often retired generals and retired military officers – complaining that too many soldiers are being killed because there isn’t an after-war plan.

Two of the 10 soldiers were killed in a tank incident in the north of Gaza.

That area is supposed to have been cleared of Hamas fighters, so Israel’s military says, but it is having to back up there because Hamas is reappearing.

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Haniyeh says Hamas’s ceasefire response aligns with deal’s principles

Haniyeh, speaking in a televised address on Eid day, also said Hamas is ready to accept an agreement that guarantees a permanent ceasefire, full Israeli withdrawal from Gaza, reconstruction, and an exchange deal.

Palestinians would continue to show resilience, resistance, and commitment to their national struggle, he added in comments after US Secretary of State Blinken criticised Hamas last week for its reply to the ceasefire proposal.

Israel’s government has yet to publicly back the deal, despite US claims that it has accepted it. Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu has continued to insist that the war will not end before Hamas is defeated.

Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh speaks during a press briefing after his meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian in Tehran, Iran, Tuesday, March 26
Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh speaks during a press briefing [File:Vahid Salemi/AP Photo]

Israel has no ‘exit strategy’ from war

“They [the Israeli military] occupied half of [Rafah] and the Palestinians are still resisting and killing more and more Israeli soldiers,” Barari told Al Jazeera.

“It seems that Israel is bogged down in this war with no exit strategy and people are fed up with that. That’s why thousands of people are taking to the streets calling for not only ending the war but also for Netanyahu to step down,” he said.

How the war plays out in the coming weeks will largely hinge on battlefield developments and how much pressure the US exerts on Israel to negotiate a ceasefire deal with Hamas, said Barari, noting that there are still major gaps between the two sides.

 Israeli soldiers operate inside the Gaza Strip, as seen from southern Israel, on Feb. 13
Israeli soldiers operate inside the Gaza Strip, as seen from southern Israel [File:Ariel Schalit/AP Photo]

Gallant, Netanyahu unaware of military’s ‘tactical pause’ plans: Report

The pause, to take place every day from 8am to 7pm, will only apply to humanitarian aid transport travelling on the corridor, with Israel’s military operations to continue uninterrupted in Rafah, according to the military.

N12 news tweeted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had also not been informed.

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Israel’s Ben-Gvir slams tactical pause as ‘delusional’

In a post on X, Ben-Gvir said the decision was “delusional”, especially after the recent death of 10 Israeli soldiers, and had not been approved by Israel’s war cabinet.

Ben-Gvir has repeatedly called for Israel to slash aid delivered to Gaza during the war and to re-occupy the enclave.

Relentless attacks, hunger grip Gaza on Eid day

The Israeli military has aggressively attacked western areas of Rafah city, including the Saudi neighbourhood and Tal as-Sultan, where hundreds of families are trapped.

The attacks have destroyed many homes and public facilities, pushing people into a state of panic.

In the central area of Gaza, mainly eastern Deir el-Balah City, artillery shelling … targeted areas where the Israeli military claimed Palestinian fighting groups had “used infrastructure”, without providing further information.

Those attacks have pushed people into further internal displacement; in the northern part of the Strip, people are not only struggling to deal with unpredictable falling bombs and attacks on their homes… but also the spread of dehydration and hunger.

This is happening on the first day of Eid, where we’re looking at hundreds of thousands of displaced Palestinian families, many of them in mourning.

Photos: Palestinians hold Eid al-Adha prayers amid rubble of southern Gaza

Palestinians hold Eid al-Adha prayers by the ruins of the al-Rahma mosque, destroyed by Israeli air attack in Khan Younis, southern Gaza on June 16 [Mohammed Salem/Reuters]
Palestinians hold Eid al-Adha prayers by the ruins of the Al-Rahma mosque destroyed by Israeli air strikes, amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip, June 16, 2024. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem
[Mohammed Salem/Reuters]
Palestinians attend Eid al-Adha prayers by the ruins of al-Al Rahma mosque destroyed by Israeli air strikes, amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip, June 16, 2024. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
[Mohammed Salem/Reuters]
people pray next to a destroyed building
[Mohammed Salem/Reuters]
Palestinians hold Eid al-Adha prayers by the ruins of al-Al Rahma mosque destroyed by Israeli air strikes, amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in Khan Younis, in the southern Gaza Strip, June 16, 2024. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem
[Mohammed Salem/Reuters]

IED on armoured car possible cause of high Israeli death toll in Rafah: Monitors

However, the armed group affiliation of the Palestinian fighters who carried out the attack in Rafah’s Tal as-Sultan neighbourhood that killed eight Israeli soldiers on the same day is not identified in the latest battlefield report.

The two US-based defence think tanks report that the deadly IED attack targeted a “Namer” armoured combat engineering vehicle of the Israeli military’s 401st Armoured Brigade in Tal as-Sultan.

According to the report, the vehicle was in a convoy to a captured building in Rafah, where Israeli troops were due to rest. The Namer’s armour should have protected the occupants from the blast, the monitors report, leading to the suggestion that the IED might have been planted directly on the vehicle by a Palestinian fighter.

At least one rocket was launched from the Khan Younis area of Gaza towards Israel on Saturday, the monitors reported.

A convoy of Israeli army vehicles maneuvers near Israel's border after leaving Gaza, southern Israel, on Friday, Nov. 24, 2023. Friday marks the start of a four-day cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war, during which the Gaza militants pledged to release 50 hostages in exchange for 150 Palestinians imprisoned by Israel. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
A convoy of Israeli armoured vehicles near Gaza’s border in November 2023 [Tsafrir Abayov/AP Photo]

Antigovernment protesters block major Israeli highways

The protesters, who blocked Route 1 towards Jerusalem and Route 4 near Israel’s central city of Ra’anana, are calling for the government to strike a captive exchange deal and to call new elections, The Times of Israel says.

The demonstrations follow an anti government rally in Tel Aviv on Saturday night which police dispersed, resulting in skirmishes, and the arrest of 12 people.

‘Total victory’ in Gaza war a ‘ridiculous’ goal that is impossible to achieve – Gideon Levy

Levy described the death of the eight soldiers as a “heavy price for Israeli society”.

“It is not unprecedented but it is a very meaningful figure, even though let’s remember that 38 [Palestinians] in Gaza were killed today,” Levy told Al Jazeera.

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Israeli army says fighting will continue in southern Gaza despite ‘tactical pause’

The army’s English-language post announcing the pause in fighting had been published 90 minutes before the Hebrew post clarified that Israeli forces would continue their operations in Rafah.

Photos: Celebrations, prayers at Al-Aqsa Mosque despite heavy Israeli restrictions

A man carries a girl on his shoulders as Palestinians gather on the first day of Eid al-Adha at the Al-Aqsa compound in occupied East Jerusalem, June 16, 2024 [Ammar Awad/Reuters]
people pray outside the arches of an old building
People gathered at the mosque early on Sunday amid tight restrictions from Israeli authorities, with some worshippers reportedly assaulted by Israeli forces [Ammar Awad/Reuters]
a man throws a little girl into the air next to a gold dome
Despite the heavy restrictions, many Palestinian families celebrated Eid with their children at the compound [Ammar Awad/Reuters]

307 Israeli soldiers killed since land assault on Gaza began

This brings the total tally of Israeli soldiers killed since the ground invasion of Gaza on October 27 to at least 307, according to a running casualty toll published on the Israeli military’s website.

FILE - Israeli soldiers take up positions during a ground operation in Khan Younis, Gaza Strip on Jan. 10. 2024. An AP analysis of Gaza Health Ministry data finds the proportion of Palestinian women and children being killed in the Israel-Hamas war appears to have declined sharply. Israel faces heavy international criticism over unprecedented levels of civilian casualties in Gaza. (AP Photo/Ohad Zwigenberg, File)
Israeli soldiers in Khan Younis, Gaza Strip, in January 2024 [File: Ohad Zwigenberg/AP Photo]

Israeli forces assault worshippers near Al-Aqsa Mosque: Report

Israeli forces also assaulted some worshippers on their way to the holy site and upon leaving it, said Wafa.

Despite the heavy-handed security, more than 40,000 people have performed Eid prayers at the mosque, according to the Jerusalem Islamic Waqf that oversees the site.

Palestinians try to hold on to Eid happiness amid devastation in Gaza

Palestinians here in Deir el-Balah are praying in public areas where they are surrounded by destruction and devastation.

They came here today to pray and at the same time to congratulate each other for Eid al-Adha and to bring a sense of hope that they are still clinging to their homeland.

Typically, Palestinians celebrate this holiday by meeting their families and sharing large meals. But those meals are no longer affordable, as more than half of Gaza’s population is on the brink of famine.

Palestinians are trying to do their best, despite Israel’s ongoing aggression, to bring happiness to young children, as many of them will wake up today and celebrate Eid without their parents.

people pray next to a destroyed building
Palestinians hold Eid al-Adha prayers by the ruins of the Al-Rahma mosque in Khan Younis on June 16, 2024 [Mohammed Salem/Reuters]
people pray next to a destroyed building
The mosque is one of many in Gaza destroyed by Israeli air raids [Mohammed Salem/Reuters]

Israel’s war on Gaza tied to ‘survival’ of Netanyahu government: Analyst

“The Israelis have put a pretty high bar for what they call victory in Gaza since the beginning of this bombardment of the Strip that began in October, and I don’t think that they are really going to get any closer to victory,” Hellyer told Al Jazeera.

“The way in which they define victory is complete removal of the governance and military capacity of Hamas. And, as we have just seen, the military capacity of Hamas is far from being removed,” Hellyer said.

“It has been degraded significantly, substantially even. But, the idea that you can completely remove that military capacity – while at the same time continuing this sort of bombardment where people are going to be very easily recruited into operations resisting the Israelis – I think is really short-sighted,” he said.

“I think this is a political decision by the Netanyahu government that realises that they really don’t have much of an endgame when it comes to this particular ‘operation’ in Gaza. Except to just keep on going in order to maintain the survival of the Netanyahu government,” he added.

ICJ
Netanyahu in the northern Gaza Strip in December 2023 [Avi Ohayon/Handout via AP]

8 Israeli soldiers killed in Rafah ambush in deadliest incident for months

Hamas’s armed wing says its fighters carried out the attack in southern Gaza in a complex ambush using rocket-propelled grenades.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel’s war on Gaza will continue, despite what he called the “staggering cost” of the war.

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Two explosions reported near ship in Red Sea: UK maritime office

“The crew and vessel are reported safe,” it added.

The latest incident comes after the US military’s Central Command claimed an Iranian warship ignored a distress call from the MV Verbena on Saturday after the ship was hit by two Houthi missiles on Saturday, forcing its crew to abandon the vessel.

If you’re just joining us

  • The Israeli military has announced that two soldiers were killed in northern Gaza on Saturday when an explosive device was detonated against their tank. The incident comes after eight Israeli soldiers were killed the same day in Rafah in a Hamas ambush.
  • Israel’s far-right Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich has called for “the complete destruction of the enemy” in Gaza following the attack in southern Gaza.
  • The Israeli military has announced it will pause fighting along a road in the south of the Gaza Strip during certain hours to allow humanitarian aid deliveries to enter the besieged enclave.
  • Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has said she fears Israel had fallen into a “trap” set by Hamas to “isolate it” from the international community.
Palestinians react at the site of an Israeli strike on a house, amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in Deir Al-Balah, in the central Gaza Strip, June 14, 2024. REUTERS/Abed Khaled TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Palestinians at the site of an Israeli attack on a house in Deir el-Balah in the central Gaza Strip on Friday [Abed Khaled/Reuters]

Israel announces ‘tactical pause’ along road in southern Gaza

The army said in a post on X that the pause would begin at 8am (05:00 GMT) and remain in effect until 7pm (16:00 GMT), and would be repeated each day until further notice.

The announcement comes after eight Israeli soldiers were killed on Saturday in a Hamas ambush in the southern city of Rafah.

Aid organisations have long warned that Israel’s offensive on Rafah in Gaza’s south – which began in early May and has displaced more than 1 million Palestinians – blocked access to the two crossings through which the vast majority of food and other essential supplies had entered Gaza amid Israel’s complete blockade of the territory.

an aerial view of a long line of trucks on one side of a road in the desert
A huge line of aid trucks can be seen waiting on an Egyptian road along the border with Israel, near the Rafah border crossing with Gaza, on May 2, 2024 [Oren Alon/Reuters]

UK’s Labour Party loses Muslim election support over stance on Gaza war

About four in five UK Muslims voted Labour in 2019, reinforcing strong bonds between the party and Muslim communities that were forged after the mass migration of workers from Pakistan to Britain in the 1950s and 1960s.

But recent polling suggested about one in five of those voters are set to defect from Labour.

“In some towns across the north of England, the mosques are saying, ‘Don’t vote for either of the main parties’,” Labour candidate John Grogan told the AFP news agency at his office in Keighley town in Yorkshire.

Solicitor Shaid Iqbal, a leading figure in the Keighley’s Muslim community, said people were “very, very angry”.

“They’re angry at both parties. But the fact is, Labour more, because they thought that Labour was a party which would stick up for human rights, speak up against atrocities,” he told AFP.

“They’ve let the public down.”

Two women walk along a terraced residential street past drying laundry in the town centre of Keighley, northwest England, on June 14, 2024. - Gaza is a long way from the picturesque foothills of the Yorkshire Dales but the issue could swing UK general election races in northern England, with many local Muslims angry at Labour's stance. While Labour is expected to win a thumping national majority on July 4, leader Keir Starmer's refusal to back an unconditional ceasefire in Gaza has caused a split with once-loyal Muslim supporters. (Photo by Oli SCARFF / AFP)
Two women walk along a terraced residential street in the town centre of Keighley, northwest England, on June 14, 2024 [Oli Scarff/AFP]

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Israeli military announces 2 more soldiers killed in tank explosion in northern Gaza

The men, a 28-year-old and a 49-year-old, both members of the 8th Reserve Armoured Brigade’s 129th Battalion, were killed when an explosive device was detonated against their tank.

Two more Israeli soldiers were seriously injured in the attack and have been evacuated for treatment, according to the announcement.

A total of 10 Israeli soldiers were killed in Gaza on Saturday.

Eight troops were also killed in the southern city of Rafah after Hamas fighters ambushed their vehicle with rocket-propelled grenades.

UN officials in Lebanon call for peace on Israel border on Eid al-Adha

“As communities in Lebanon and around the world celebrate Eid Al-Adha, the UN family reiterates its call for all actors along the Blue Line to put down their weapons and commit to a path of peace,” the officials said.

The joint statement on Saturday came from the UN special coordinator for Lebanon, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, and the head of the UN peacekeeping forces in Lebanon, UNIFIL, Aroldo Lazaro.

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Israeli military identifies more soldiers killed in Rafah attack

Two of the slain soldiers were 21 years old, two were 20 years old and one was 19 years old. The five were all sergeants in the Combat Engineering Corps’ 601st Battalion.

A 23-year-old deputy company commander who also died in the Rafah attack was named yesterday.

The names of the final two Israeli soldiers killed in the Hamas ambush are set to be released later today.

Israeli firms planned to evade ban from French arms show: Rights groups

“Several declarations by Israeli companies indicated that they would circumvent this ban, by being present at other companies’ stands, and through subsidiaries or other affiliated companies,” the association of 30 organisations, collectively known as Stop Arming Israel France, said in a statement on Saturday after the court extended its initial ban.

“At least seven subsidiary companies” that “were majority-owned by Israeli companies, were still registered for the show”, the statement added.

The groups said that the participation of some Israeli arms companies at the trade show meant there remained a “high risk that the exhibition would contribute to international crimes, and violations of international humanitarian law”.

Photos: Desperation as displaced people queue for donated food in Khan Younis camp

Children stand at a gathering of internally displaced Palestinians to collect food donated by a charitable group, in a camp in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, on June 15, 2024 [Haitham Imad/EPA]
epa11413733 Children stand at a gathering of internally displaced Palestinians to collect food donated by a charitable group, in Khan Yunis camp, southern Gaza Strip, 15 June 2024. Since 07 October 2023, up to 1.7 million people, or more than 75 percent of the population, have been displaced throughout the Gaza Strip, some more than once, in search of safety, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which added that the Palestinian enclave is 'on the brink of famine', with 1.1 million people (half of its population) 'experiencing catastrophic food insecurity' due to the conflict and restrictions on humanitarian access. EPA-EFE/HAITHAM IMAD
[Haitham Imad/EPA]
epa11413733 Children stand at a gathering of internally displaced Palestinians to collect food donated by a charitable group, in Khan Yunis camp, southern Gaza Strip, 15 June 2024. Since 07 October 2023, up to 1.7 million people, or more than 75 percent of the population, have been displaced throughout the Gaza Strip, some more than once, in search of safety, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which added that the Palestinian enclave is 'on the brink of famine', with 1.1 million people (half of its population) 'experiencing catastrophic food insecurity' due to the conflict and restrictions on humanitarian access. EPA-EFE/HAITHAM IMAD
[Haitham Imad/EPA]
epa11413733 Children stand at a gathering of internally displaced Palestinians to collect food donated by a charitable group, in Khan Yunis camp, southern Gaza Strip, 15 June 2024. Since 07 October 2023, up to 1.7 million people, or more than 75 percent of the population, have been displaced throughout the Gaza Strip, some more than once, in search of safety, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which added that the Palestinian enclave is 'on the brink of famine', with 1.1 million people (half of its population) 'experiencing catastrophic food insecurity' due to the conflict and restrictions on humanitarian access. EPA-EFE/HAITHAM IMAD
[Haitham Imad/EPA]
epa11413733 Children stand at a gathering of internally displaced Palestinians to collect food donated by a charitable group, in Khan Yunis camp, southern Gaza Strip, 15 June 2024. Since 07 October 2023, up to 1.7 million people, or more than 75 percent of the population, have been displaced throughout the Gaza Strip, some more than once, in search of safety, according to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), which added that the Palestinian enclave is 'on the brink of famine', with 1.1 million people (half of its population) 'experiencing catastrophic food insecurity' due to the conflict and restrictions on humanitarian access. EPA-EFE/HAITHAM IMAD
[Haitham Imad/EPA]

Italian PM says Israel falling into Hamas trap over Gaza

“It looks like Israel is jumping into a trap. For the trap of Hamas was to isolate it. It seems it is working,” Meloni said.

Earlier, we reported that Meloni wrapped up the three-day global event held in Puglia by saying that Italy is a “friend of Israel”.

“What we have to do is to work for peace and it is exactly what we’re doing and to work for peace we have to dialogue and we have to recognize the right of Israel to be safe,” she said.

Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and U.S. President Joe Biden attend Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGII) event on the first day of the G7 summit, in Savelletri, Italy, June 13, 2024. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and US President Joe Biden at the G7 summit on June 13 [Kevin Lamarque/Reuters]

French court extends ban on Israeli participants in weapons trade show

French judges also ordered the event’s organiser, COGES, to post the court’s decision at all entrances to the Eurosatory arms trade show, al-Haq added.

The updated ruling extends an earlier ruling which banned Israeli firms from exhibiting at the event, which begins on Monday and will run until June 21.

“Conditions are no longer met to host Israeli companies at the show at a time when [French President Emmanuel Macron] is calling for Israel to cease operations in Rafah,” the French Defence Ministry said at the time.

two killer robots are seen facing off at an exhibition
‘Killer robots’ from US Darley Defense, left, and Israel’s General Robotics, right, at the Eurosatory trade show in 2022 [File: Emmanuel Dunand/AFP]

Israeli far-right minister calls for ‘complete destruction’ after lethal Hamas ambush in Rafah

Smotrich said in a post on social media that Israel was in a “war for our existence”, adding that “our sons fell so we would win”.

“The heavy price of the war obliges us to continue until the complete destruction of the enemy,” he said.

Israel’s far-right National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir also said, “We must continue fighting”, in a post on social media.

“…to topple Hamas, return all our abductees and assure their families that the death of their loved ones was not in vain.”

Strikes in Lebanon – Villages near border with Israel are abandoned

There is now increasing concern the situation on the Israel-Lebanon front is reaching a critical point.

As people in border communities abandon their homes to seek safety from air strikes and artillery fire, life continues as normal in the capital Beirut, exposing the deep divisions of life in Lebanon.

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Israeli police arrest Haaretz photographer at protest rally in Tel Aviv

The video shows police leading one protester away in a headlock before an undercover officer is seen pushing photographer Itay Ron onto a bus carrying detainees, ignoring protests from observers that he is a journalist.

Police said that 12 people in total were arrested at the protest for alleged public order violations on Saturday night, including blocking roads and demonstrating longer than permitted.

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Israelis make entry of aid more difficult amid ‘critical nutritional situation’ in Gaza: UNICEF

“It’s a very complicated process to get in because of the restrictions put on top of aid. But we do it. We know the paperwork. We know the hoops to jump through. But it is very difficult to get aid in,” Elder told Al Jazeera.

“For example, in May, humanitarian agents got in half as many trucks of aid as in April. Half as many when we have this critical nutrition situation. Why was that the case? That was the case because in May, of course, we had the Rafah offensive,” Elder said.

“The ‘limited’ offensive in Rafah that led to the displacement of a million people. So less aid is coming in,” he said.

“But it’s not just getting it in. When we get it in, it’s making sure we can get it across the Gaza Strip without aid workers being killed. More aid workers have been killed in this war than any war since the advent of the United Nations,” he added.

alestinian girl is checked for malnutrition at a medical tent set up by MedGlobal in cooperation with UNICEF, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, February 14, 2024. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa
A Palestinian girl is checked for malnutrition at a medical tent set up by MedGlobal in cooperation with UNICEF in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, in February 2024 [Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters]

US military accuses Iranian warship of ignoring distress call from ship attacked by Houthis

The Ukrainian-owned, Polish-operated cargo ship was hit by two missiles fired by the Yemen-based Houthis in the Arabian Sea on June 13. The crew said it abandoned the vessel after enduring continued fire from Houthi fighters.

CENTCOM said the Iranian naval frigate IRIN Jamaran was only eight nautical miles (15km) from M/V Verbena, but did not respond to the distress call. Another ship, the M/V Anna Meta, eventually came to the aid of the crew and was transporting them to safety.

A civilian mariner was “seriously injured” in the attack on the M/V Verbena.

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More from White House on Gaza truce talks

Sullivan told reporters that he will speak with Qatar’s Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani again on Sunday, in Switzerland, where they are both attending the Ukraine peace summit.

“We think some of the edits are not unexpected and can be managed,” Sullivan said, referring to Hamas’s latest response to the proposed deal.

“Some of [the edits] are inconsistent both with what President Biden laid out and what the UN Security Council endorsed. And we are having to deal with that reality,” he added.

Sullivan also said that the US planned to continue “consulting with the Israelis”.

a man in a suit with a moustache stands in front of flags
Qatar’s Prime Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani is in Switzerland for the Ukraine peace summit [Denis Balibouse/Pool/Reuters]
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Photos: ‘Freedom for Palestine’ rally in Dublin

People protest in the Dublin, Ireland, calling on governments around the world to stop arming Israel, on June 15, 2024 [Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters]
A man holds Irish and Palestinian flags as people protest calling for governments around the world to stop arming Israel during a demonstration in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Dublin, Ireland, June 15, 2024. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne
A man holds Irish and Palestinian flags during a demonstration in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, in Dublin, Ireland, on Saturday [Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters]
People protest calling for governments around the world to stop arming Israel during a demonstration in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Dublin, Ireland, June 15, 2024. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne
[Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters]
People protest calling for governments around the world to stop arming Israel during a demonstration in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Dublin, Ireland, June 15, 2024. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne
[Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters]
A woman holds a sign as people protest calling for governments around the world to stop arming Israel during a demonstration in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Dublin, Ireland, June 15, 2024. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne
[Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters]

‘All signs are for’ regional escalation as Lebanon-Israel fighting flares

“Obviously, all the signs are for an escalation,” he told Al Jazeera.

Kamel added that this has been heightened by Israel’s use of white phosphorous in southern Lebanon, which Human Rights Watch has warned violates international law and can cause disproportionate civilian suffering.

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Israeli military makes arrests, conducts raids across the occupied West Bank

Israeli forces have also arrested a man from the town of Beit Rima, west of Ramallah, the Wafa news agency reports.

The Israeli military has also carried out raids in other locations across the occupied West Bank, including:

  • Qalqilya city
  • Rujib village and the Balata refugee camp, east of Nablus
  • Beit Rima town, northwest of Ramallah, where confrontations have broken out
  • Rujib village in Nablus and the eastern area of the city of Nablus
  • The town of al-Khader near the city of Bethlehem

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‘Total victory’ in Gaza war a ‘ridiculous’ goal that is impossible to achieve: Analyst

“It is not unprecedented but it is a very meaningful figure even though let’s remember that 38 people in Gaza were killed today,” Levy told Al Jazeera.

“But it is different as eight soldiers is a big, heavy price for Israeli society, especially when it gets into the total number, and the total atmosphere, which, day-after-day, almost every day, we hear about losses of soldiers,” Levy said.

“And more and more people in Israel are asking ‘What for?’ And, ‘Until when?’”

“This war might become an endless war. A war of attrition which as strong as the Israeli army is, the Hamas forces can always kill and sabotage and then there will be retaliation. It leads nowhere and it is endless,” he said.

“They will never achieve this ridiculous ‘total victory’ that Prime Minister Netanyahu is speaking about, and there will be no defeat here. It will go on, and on and on until Israel and Hamas – mainly Israel – will realise that it leads to nowhere and it must stop at any price.”

Thousand of Israeli soldiers were rushed to the border with Gaza in the first weeks of the war.
Thousands of Israeli soldiers were rushed to the border with Gaza in the first weeks of the war [File: Nils Adler/Al Jazeera]

Footage shows UK police assaulting pro-Palestine protesters in Manchester

In the footage, a police officer can be seen pushing over a man with a walking stick, while other scenes show officers violently throwing protesters to the ground, including women and the elderly.

Thousands of people attended the march in Manchester, according to organisers, calling for an end to Israel’s war on Gaza and its occupation of the West Bank.

Israeli settlers invade Palestinian homes in Jordan Valley, assaulting residents: Report

Several Palestinians were assaulted, with one injured resident taken to the Ain al-Bayda Emergency Centre for treatment, Wafa added.

The raid came two days after a similar assault, as Palestinians in the occupied West Bank continue to face mounting violence while the Israeli government expands settlements, which are illegal under international law.

a man paints an israeli flag on a small building
Israeli settlers paint an Israeli flag on a Palestinian home after its residents were forced to flee, in the Jordan Valley, in the occupied West Bank on March 11, 2024 [File: Atef Safadi/EPA]

‘Massive explosions, black smoke in sky’: Israelis pound Rafah after deadly Hamas ambush

We know that the air strikes have intensified in the exact same place where the incident took place. We know that at least eight Israeli soldiers have been killed in this incident. But we still don’t how this incident took place.

The upcoming hours are going to reveal a lot.

The area that was targeted is Tal as-Sultan. It’s in the western parts of Rafah and that area had hundreds of thousands of families that were displaced. Tal as-Sultan is not very far away from the al-Mawasi area in Rafah, where there are a lot of people sheltering.

No ambulances, no healthcare workers and no journalists were able to reach that area because the Israeli forces were targeting anyone who gets close.

But we know there have been a lot of massive air strikes and a lot of massive explosions, and a targeting of residential buildings.

People from Khan Younis were reporting that they were hearing the explosions and they were seeing the black smoke in the sky.

FILE - Smoke rises following an Israeli airstrike in Rafah, Gaza Strip, on May 30, 2024. An AP analysis of Gaza Health Ministry data finds the proportion of Palestinian women and children being killed in the Israel-Hamas war appears to have declined sharply. Israel faces heavy international criticism over unprecedented levels of civilian casualties in Gaza. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana, File)
Smoke rises following an Israeli air strike in Rafah on May 30, 2024 [Abdel Kareem Hana/AP Photos]

Indonesian hospital reopens, but only medical centre in northern Gaza lacks fuel

However, its operations remain severely constrained by Israel’s blockade on medical supplies and fuel entering the Palestinian territory.

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Netanyahu says war ‘must continue’ after Hamas ambush kills 8 Israeli soldiers in Rafah

Al Jazeera is reporting from outside Israel because it has been banned by the Israeli government.

The Israeli army said that an initial probe into the incident shows that a combat engineer vehicle carrying all eight of those soldiers exploded.

They are looking into the possibility that it was an antitank missile that was fired, though an initial investigation shows that it was some sort of explosive that was either underneath the vehicle or placed on it by, perhaps, a Hamas fighter.

Nonetheless, the Israeli army is saying that this was an attack and Hamas confirming that it was their fighters that launched the attack.

We’ve been hearing from Israeli politicians across the political aisle.

[Israeli] Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that even though there had been heavy losses in this war and today, specifically, the war and the fighting must continue until all of the goals are achieved.

Nearly nine months into this war, Israel has not accomplished what it set out to back in October. There are still more than 120 Israeli captives still being held inside of Gaza and since the ground invasion began late last year, the death toll of Israeli soldiers is now at 308.

Photos: Arrests as Israelis demand Netanyahu government reach deal to get captives back

Police arrest a protester during a rally that blocked a road outside the Kirya military headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel on Saturday night [Abir Sultan/EPA-EFE]
people in grey uniforms physically restrain a man with a beard at a protest
Israeli police arrested several protesters, as well as a photographer from the Israeli newspaper Haaretz who tried to photograph the arrests [Marko Djurica/Reuters]
people in grey uniforms physically restrain a man with a beard at a protest
Israelis have been holding weekly demonstrations protesting the Netanyahu government’s handling of the war in Gaza and its failure to reach a deal to bring home captives [Marko Djurica/Reuters]
people in grey uniforms grab a young woman at a protest at night
Police detain another young protester in Tel Aviv on Saturday [Marko Djurica/Reuters]
police ride on black horses next to a protest with brightly coloured signs
Police use horses to try to disperse protesters after they blocked a road outside the Kirya military headquarters [Abir Sultan/EPA]

Injuries reported as Israeli military attacks Gaza City, Rafah and Nuseirat refugee camp

An Israeli bomb struck a home in the Tal as-Sultan neighbourhood of Rafah City, while a “violent raid” was launched on a house in Shuhada Shati Square in the Shati refugee camp, west of Gaza City.

The Israeli military has also “blown up” several residential buildings in the town of al-Mughraqa, north of the Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza.

No deaths have been reported from these attacks yet, but we will keep you updated with any developments.

The scale of the destruction across Gaza

Interactive_Gaza-Scale of destruction_June13_2024

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A recap of recent developments

  • Israeli attacks on Gaza have killed at least 30 Palestinians and wounded 95 more in the past 24-hour reporting period, according to the enclave’s Health Ministry.
  • Hamas fighters have killed eight Israeli soldiers travelling in military vehicles in Rafah after firing rocket-propelled grenades and then ambushing a support force deployed to the scene.
  • Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described the deaths as a “heart-rending price” to pay, but said Israel still has to achieve all of its goals in its war on Gaza.
  • At the G7 summit in Italy, the grouping’s final communique signalled support for a Gaza ceasefire deal laid out by US President Joe Biden but stopped short of condemning Israel for the conduct of its war on the Palestinian territory.
  • Biden had earlier responded with a “no” when asked at the G7 if he was confident there would be a ceasefire deal between Hamas and Israel soon.

Welcome to our live coverage

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Al-Quds Brigades says one fighter killed in southern Lebanon

The group said Abu Khalil “is one of the heroes of the Martyr Ali Al-Aswad Brigade – Syria Square”.

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Photos: Bittersweet preparations in Gaza for Eid al-Adha

Palestinians shop at a market set up amid the rubble of buildings collapsed due to Israel’s continuing attacks in the Nuseirat district of the Gaza Strip [Ashraf Amra/Anadolu]
Palestinians shop at a market set up amid the rubble of buildings collapsed due to Israel's ongoing attacks in the Nuseirat district of the Gaza Strip, Gaza on June 15
Despite continuing Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip, which have continued uninterrupted for months, Palestinians displaced by war and those who have lost their homes and loved ones are striving to celebrate the Eid al-Adha holiday [Ashraf Amra/Anadolu]
KHAN YUNIS, GAZA - JUNE 15: Palestinian hairdressers give haircut to Palestinian children within the preparations for Eid al-Adha in the shadow of Israeli attacks in Khan Yunis
Palestinian hairdressers give haircuts to Palestinian children during the preparations for Eid al-Adha in the shadow of Israeli attacks in Khan Younis [Doaa Albaz/Anadolu]
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PRCS says Palestinian teenager killed in the occupied West Bank

The Palestinian Health Ministry identified the teenager as Abdul Rahman Sultan Khatatba, a resident of Beit Furik.

Wafa news agency also reported, citing local sources, that Israeli forces stormed the town and fired live bullets at local residents, resulting in three injuries.

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Palestinian groups say Israeli armoured personnel carriers targeted, 8 soldiers killed

“We are hearing reports from Palestinian fighter groups who say that they targeted an APC, an armoured personnel carrier, of the Israeli military with several weapons, causing it to go up into flames and ultimately explode, which is how those eight soldiers were killed,” Salhut said from Amman. She is reporting from Jordan because Israel has banned Al Jazeera from working inside Israel.

Israel’s operation in Rafah is a ground invasion where the military has stated it is looking to get rid of remaining Hamas battalions there – but the operation has been condemned by much of the international community, she added.

“While the Israeli army says it’s not on a full scale just yet, they have taken over key positions in southern Gaza, like the border crossing where no Palestinian is now allowed to leave the Strip,” said Salhut.

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US defence secretary invites Israeli counterpart to the Pentagon

Austin invited Yoav Gallant to the United States on an unspecified date and time to discuss “ongoing security developments in the Middle East.

“Minister Gallant has accepted the invitation and will travel to the US soon (date/time TBD)”.

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Less than third of UNRWA health facilities operational, says UN agency

“Hospitals in ruin, restrictions on humanitarian access and scarce medical supplies and fuel across Gaza are pushing the health situation beyond crisis level,” the agency wrote on X.

“UNRWA health staff continues to support families but less than 1/3 of our health centres are operational. #CeasefireNow.”

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Israel says 8 soldiers killed in Rafah

Hind Khoudary, reporting from Deir el-Balah in central Gaza, says the confirmation comes after earlier reports from Palestinian fighters of an “ambush” in the area, which has been under heavy bombardments since this morning.

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UKMTO says crew of ship evacuated after Houthi attack

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) says the crew of a Palau-flagged cargo ship have been evacuated after the ship caught fire and sunk, referring to an incident that happened close to Yemen’s Aden earlier this week.

Yemen’s Houthis struck the Verbena in the Gulf of Aden on Thursday, sparking a fire and severely injuring one of its crew, US Central Command said.

The Houthis have launched dozens of attacks on international shipping in the Red Sea since November, in what they said was in solidarity with Palestinians.

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Qassam Brigades say Israeli soldiers killed in ‘complex ambush’

Hamas’s armed wing, the Qassam Brigades, says they killed and wounded Israeli soldiers in a “complex ambush” in southern Gaza.

In a statement, the Qassam Brigades said its fighters “carried out a complex ambush against enemy vehicles penetrating the area of ​​the Saudi neighbourhood in Tal as-Sultan, west of the city of Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.”

“Al-Qassam Brigades targeted a Zionist D9 bulldozer with an Al-Yassin 105 shell in Tal as-Sultan, leading to the killing and injury of soldiers,” it said.

It added that following the arrival of an Israeli rescue force, a troop carrier was targeted with an Al-Yassin 105 missile, resulting in its destruction and the “death” of those on board.

In another statement, the armed wing also said it “targeted, alongside the Al-Quds Brigades, the Sufa military site in southern Israel with a missile salvo.”

The Israeli command headquarters in the Netzarim axis west of Gaza City was also targeted with “short-range missiles,” according to the statement.

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Health workers unable to rescue people in Rafah

From Hind Khoudary, reporting from Deir el-Balah, central Gaza

There are land, air, and sea attacks on Rafah right now, where there have been dozens of houses demolished by the Israeli forces. There were also a couple of warships shooting at Palestinians across the coastline.

Also, there are zero hospitals in Rafah. There is no medical treatment, and all of the Palestinians who are being injured or killed do not have any medical teams to rescue them.

There have been reports from journalists, healthcare workers and paramedics that they could not reach an area, we’re talking about areas like Tal as-Sultan and those areas in the centre of Rafah.

There has been a lot of demolishing of houses, and it has been uninhabitable for Palestinians and not just Palestinians who are internally displaced. They have no place to go just like what happened in Khan Younis.

All of the people who are injured and the paramedics could reach are going to the European Hospital in Khan Younis.

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‘Five projectiles’ fired from Gaza humanitarian zone, says Israel

The Israeli army says “five projectiles” were fired from the humanitarian area in central Gaza on Friday.

In a statement on Telegram, the army said two of the projectiles fell into open areas, and the other three fell inside the Gaza Strip.

“This is a further example of the cynical exploitation of humanitarian infrastructure and the civilian population as human shields by terror organisations in the Gaza Strip for their terrorist attacks,” the army said.

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Bodies of 9 Palestinians retrieved in Rafah: Report

Rescue teams in the Gaza Strip have retrieved the bodies of nine Palestinians from different areas in Rafah, the Wafa news agency reported, quoting medical sources at the European Gaza Hospital in Khan Younis.

The bodies, Wafa reported, were retrieved from the rubble of houses bombarded in Israeli attacks.

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Indonesia welcomes Australian, Singaporean militaries for peacekeeping mission

Agus Subiyanto, Commander General of the Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI), says Australian and Singaporean militaries are eager to join a UN peacekeeping operation in Gaza.

Subiyanto welcomed Australia and Singapore’s calls for the peacekeeping operation in Gaza on the sidelines of the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) in Jakarta on Friday.

He said cooperation, especially among countries from the Asian region, was “highly necessary” to end the war.

However, he did not provide details on the potential cooperation between the defence forces for the peacekeeping mission.

Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi also recently said Indonesia can send its peacekeeping forces, provided it was authorised by a UN mandate.

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Photos: Spanish protesters take to the streets in solidarity with Palestinians

A woman looks on at the Freedom for Palestine protest
A woman looks on as The Freedom for Palestine Platform protest in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, in Madrid, Spain [Ana Beltran/Reuters]
A Palestinian flag is placed on the ground during a protest
A Palestinian flag is placed on the ground during the protest [Ana Beltran/Reuters]
People lie on the ground during a protest from the Freedom for Palestine
People lie on the ground during the protest [Ana Beltran/Reuters]
A man carries a Palestinian flag as he attends a protest from the Freedom for Palestine Platform
A man carries a Palestinian flag as he attends a protest with the Freedom for Palestine Platform in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, in Madrid, Spain [Ana Beltran/Reuters]
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Fire breaks out in Goren, western GalileeThe Israeli army says several rockets launched from Lebanon have fallen in Goren in western Galilee and a fire has broken out in the area.—————————————-Erdogan says US ceasefire deal a ‘test of sincerity’Turkey’s President Erdogan says his US counterpart Biden is undergoing “a test of sincerity” for his handling of the war on Gaza.On his way back from the G7 summit in Italy, Erdogan told reporters that Biden is expected to show how the ceasefire plan is not a calculated electoral tactic but a sincere effort.During the summit, Biden was asked if he was confident there would be a ceasefire deal between Hamas and Israel soon, to which he responded with a “no”.“I haven’t lost hope, but it’s going to be tough. Hamas has … to move,” he told reporters.—————————————-Nearly 500 medical personnel killed in Gaza: PRCSThe Palestine Red Crescent Society says 498 medical personnel have been killed since the beginning of Israel’s war on Gaza in October.—————————————-Lack of water making near-famine conditions across Gaza worse

Israeli forces have destroyed nearly all the water wells in northern Gaza. The lack of water is making the near-famine conditions across Gaza worse as Palestinians struggle to access clean drinking water.

Footage shared online, and verified by Al Jazeera, shows a stampede and crowding among the displaced people at UNRWA schools trying to get drinking water on a daily basis.

“See how people suffer from lack of water and the spread of sewage, shelter and other challenges, including lack of food and aid,” one of the displaced people said.

“I came for several days trying to get water but wasn’t successful,” said an elderly woman. “We were displaced from Beit Hanoon after we lost our homes and now in Jabalia camp, we beg for water.”

One woman said that “the Israelis destroyed not only our homes but water wells too … we cannot feed our children and now we cannot find a drop of clean water”.

“This is not life. Even animals have a better life compared to us. We are butchered, if not by the Israeli bombardment, by starvation and lack of water,” she added.

In addition to wells, Israeli strikes and incursions destroyed desalination units and its troops are blocking fuel. Some Palestinians have resorted to drinking seawater.

Displaced Palestinians carry water containers as Gazan families struggle
Displaced Palestinians carry water containers in Jabalia refugee camp [Mahmoud Issa/Reuters]
A displaced Palestinian woman bathes her son as Gazan families struggle with water pollution and scarcity
A displaced Palestinian woman bathes her son as Gazan families struggle with water pollution and scarcity [Mahmoud Issa/Reuters]
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Islamic Jihad says captive deal can only happen after Israel’s withdrawal

The armed wing of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, al-Quds Brigades, says the only way to return the remaining captives held in Gaza is through Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza.

According to Israeli tallies, there are 116 captives left in Gaza out of 250 taken during the Hamas-led attack on October 7. More than 100 were released in exchange for about 240 Palestinians held in Israeli jails during a truce in November. Four captives were also rescued last week during an Israeli operation in Nuseirat.

At least 40 of those still in Gaza have been declared dead in absentia by Israel.

Earlier this week, Hamas responded to a ceasefire proposal by the United States and requested amendments for it to proceed.

Among the requests are the reconstruction of Gaza, the lifting of the Israeli blockade, allowing the movement of people and transporting goods without restrictions.

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Freed Israeli captive calls for more protests

An Israeli captive freed during the attack on Nuseirat refugee camp is calling for more protests, demanding that the remaining captives in Gaza be released.

“I’m already in Israel at home but lots of hostages are still there in Gaza,” Andrey Kozlov said in a video address. “I saw a lot of rallies on Saturday and it gave me a lot of hope. I ask you to come and support families and hostages.”

Commenting on Kozlov’s call, Hassan Barari, a professor of international affairs at Qatar University, said the former captive knew the difficulties of rescuing the remaining captives by force.

“This man who was in captivity for 250 days. He realised it was impossible for the Israelis to deliver anyone militarily speaking … there’s no way to reach them,” Barari said.

He added Israeli forces have occupied some 90 percent of Gaza and have still failed to locate the captives, “let alone liberate them”.

“[The right-wing Israeli government] made it perfectly clear time and time again that liberating hostages is not their priority; they just want to continue the war,” he said. “This does not resonate well with Israelis and now we see more people taking to the streets. This call from the former captive will only add to Netanyahu’s predicament.”

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Germany declines to comment on targeting of academics

Germany has declined to address reports that the Education and Research Ministry was targeting academics who supported pro-Palestinian student protesters.

The public radio and television broadcaster NDR reported detailed funding cuts for professors after an open letter in May on the Free University of Berlin’s response to protesters. The letter accused the university administration of subjecting demonstrators to “police violence”.

Government spokesman Wolfgang Buchner declined to comment further on the reports and was pressed on German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s stance.

However, he acknowledged the criticism of the Education and Research Ministry, including demands for the minister to resign.

German universities have witnessed massive pro-Palestine student protests demanding their institutions call for a ceasefire in Gaza.

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Photos: Nuseirat refugee camp in ruins after Israeli strikes

People stand near vehicles and debris, in the aftermath of Israeli strikes at the area where Israeli hostages were rescued, amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, June 15
People walk near vehicles and debris, in the aftermath of Israeli strikes in Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, on Saturday [Ramadan Abed/Reuters]
A man sits at a ruined building, in the aftermath of Israeli strikes at the area where Israeli hostages were rescued, amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, June 15
[Ramadan Abed/Reuters]
A view shows damaged buildings and debris at the Nuseirat refugee camp, where Israeli hostages were rescued, in the aftermath of Israeli strikes amid the Israel-Hamas conflict, in the central Gaza Strip, June 15
A view shows damaged buildings and debris at the Nuseirat refugee camp [Ramadan Abed/Reuters]

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In case you’re just joining us

Let’s bring you up to speed.

  • At least 19 Palestinians, including a baby, were killed and 50 others were wounded in Israeli air strikes targeting homes in eastern Gaza City, Wafa reported.
  • Israeli forces have withdrawn from the town of Beita, south of Nablus in the occupied West Bank, several hours after storming it.
  • An Israeli drone attack hit a motorcycle near the southern Lebanese towns of Bint Jbeil and Aitaroun.
  • UNICEF spokesman James Elder says he witnessed Israeli forces shoot dead two Palestinian fishermen in Gaza and deny them medical care.
  • The Israel Broadcasting Corporation published video footage of a demonstration in front of PM Netanyahu’s family home in Israel’s coastal Caesarea town.

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Gaza’s death toll rises

Of those, 30 Palestinians were killed and 95 wounded in the past 24-hour reporting period, the ministry added.

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‘Mourning in every home’: Palestinians express grief ahead of Eid al-Adha

Palestinians in the occupied West Bank are unable to celebrate the Muslim holy festival of Eid al-Adha as they once did because of economic hardship, severe attacks in the Gaza Strip and unlawful actions in the West Bank.

In the lead-up to Eid al-Adha, Israel froze work permits for 80,000 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank. Before the conflict, more than 170,000 Palestinians worked in Israel, a crucial income source for the Palestinian economy.

Ahead of Eid al-Adha, Palestinian traders in livestock markets spoke of extremely weak demand while residents expressed sorrow.

“We have no joy left. There is mourning in every home. Dozens of people are killed every day. Our situation is worse than the Nakba in 1948,” said Nadir Abu Arab.

Osama Abbud, who owns a clothing store in Ramallah, said sales have decreased by more than 70 percent compared with last year, and despite discounts, demand is very low.

“This is the second Eid under the shadow of war. We have no joy left. Very few people are shopping for Eid and buying new clothes due to war, destruction, mourning and the increasingly worsening economic situation,” he said.

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Israel has ‘systematic strategy’ of making Gaza uninhabitable

Al Jazeera’s Hani Mahmoud

Reporting from Deir el-Balah, central Gaza

What we’re seeing in Rafah is part of a long, systematic strategy by the Israeli military since day one of this war.

The deliberate and intentional destruction of all means of life, including public facilities, infrastructure, as well as residential homes, turned entire residential blocks and homes and areas into piles of rubble across the Gaza Strip.

Just a cursory look at what’s going on feeds into one conclusion: Israel and its military, an occupying force on the ground, are doing whatever in their power to make Gaza uninhabitable, and that includes the deliberate destruction of residential homes.

Don’t forget that people here, the one thing that they have right now … is the hope of going back to their homes.

But with the ongoing systematic demolition of their homes either in the northern part of Gaza City, the central areas and right now what we’re seeing in Tal as-Sultan in Rafah City, hundreds upon hundreds of homes are being demolished.

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Israeli forces shot dead fishermen, denied them medical care: UNICEF

Elder, a UNICEF spokesman, says he witnessed Israeli forces shoot dead two Palestinian fishermen in Gaza and denied them medical care.

“I was watching fishermen – they were probably lawyers and engineers in a past life – with a single fishing net each, just trying to catch a few fish for their families. Suddenly, a tank came from the very large Israeli checkpoint,” Elder told Al Jazeera.

He said that he and doctors and paramedics from other UN agencies witnessed two fishermen flee on foot only to be shot down on the beach. They immediately called the Israeli army for permission to provide medical attention to the fishermen.

“That help was denied,” Elder said. “Half an hour later, the other fishermen took body bags and went down to the beach.”

One of the fishermen, Elder added, was shot in the back, while the other was shot in the neck.

“I know that because I saw that, only because we bore witness to that. These are not unique events on the Gaza Strip.”

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Israel confirms attack on motorcycle in southern Lebanon

As we reported earlier, an Israeli drone attack hit a motorcycle near the southern Lebanese towns of Bint Jbeil and Aitaroun.

The Israeli military has confirmed the attack, saying on Telegram that the aircraft struck a “Hezbollah terrorist” in the area.

“Moreover, [Israeli army] artillery fired to remove a threat in the area of Aitaroun”.

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10,000 children denied access to aid: UNICEF

UNICEF spokesman James Elder has described how difficult it has been to not only get aid into Gaza, but also to distribute it across the besieged enclave.

“More aid workers have been killed in this war than any war since the advent of the UN,” he told Al Jazeera.

Elder added that on Wednesday, UNICEF had a mission to drive a truck full of nutritional and medical supplies for 10,000 children. Their task was to deliver the aid, which was preapproved by Israeli authorities, from Deir el-Balah to Gaza City, a 40km (25 miles) round trip.

“It took 13 hours and we spent eight of those around checkpoints, arguing around paperwork – was it a truck or a van,” he said. “The reality is, this truck was denied access. Those 10,000 children did not get that aid.”

“Israel as the occupying power has the legal responsibility to facilitate that aid.”

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Israeli forces demolish evacuated homes in Rafah

Footage shared online, and verified by Al Jazeera, shows Israeli bulldozers demolishing homes west of Rafah that were already partially damaged by the attacks carried out by Israeli forces.

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Palestinians in Gaza ‘denied aid, protection, dignity’

“It should break our hearts that it’s been allowed to get to this point,” he told Al Jazeera, adding that as soon as he walked into the hospital in Deir el-Balah, he found a little boy named Ali who was asleep in the family home five days ago when it was struck.

“He fell three floors and landed in rubble. I met his mother who said the two other siblings have been killed. This has gone on for 250 days,” Elder said.

Now Palestinians are living in “sweltering heat… in tents crammed together in a breathless space with 40-degree heat on sand,” he said. “They’re being denied aid, protection, dignity.”

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Photos: Palestinians keep Eid spirit alive amid the war

Members of the Sharrab family prepare Eid cookies on the rubble of their house destroyed by Israeli attacks to in order to forget the negative traces of the war and revive the Palestinian cultural heritage during the holidays in Khan Yunis, Gaza on June 14
Members of the Sharrab family prepare Eid biscuits on the rubble of their house destroyed by Israeli attacks [Hani Alshaer/Anadolu]
Members of the Sharrab family prepare Eid cookies on the rubble of their house destroyed by Israeli attacks to in order to forget the negative traces of the war and revive the Palestinian cultural heritage during the holidays in Khan Yunis, Gaza on June 14
[Hani Alshaer/Anadolu]
Members of the Sharrab family prepare Eid cookies on the rubble of their house destroyed by Israeli attacks to in order to forget the negative traces of the war and revive the Palestinian cultural heritage during the holidays in Khan Yunis, Gaza on June 14
The biscuits are cooked in a traditional way [Hani Alshaer/Anadolu Agency]
Members of the Sharrab family prepare Eid cookies on the rubble of their house destroyed by Israeli attacks to in order to forget the negative traces of the war and revive the Palestinian cultural heritage during the holidays in Khan Yunis, Gaza on June 14
The family is distributing the biscuits to other Palestinians.
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Casualties reported in Israeli drone strike in LebanonLebanese media is reporting that an Israeli drone strike has hit a motorcycle between the southern towns of Bint Jbeil and Aitaroun in southern Lebanon and casualties are feared.Over the past few days, attacks between Hezbollah and Israeli forces have increased, following the latter’s assassination of Taleb Abdullah, the most senior Hezbollah commander killed since October 8.——————————————-At least one baby killed as Israel’s targeting of homes in Gaza continuesEarlier today, at least 19 Palestinians, including at least one baby, were killed and 50 others were wounded in Israeli air strikes targeting homes in eastern Gaza City, Wafa news agency reported.Israeli jets targeted three homes in the Tuffah and Shujayea neighbourhoods in Gaza City, resulting in the casualties, including children and women.Anadolu Agency quoted witnesses as saying that an Israeli jet struck the home in Tuffah when dozens of people were inside.The Palestinian Civil Defence rescue teams removed the body of a baby and transferred dozens of injured victims to a hospital, the witnesses said, adding that volunteers continue to look for the injured under the rubble.——————————————-Israel’s attacks in West Bank ‘adding to the growing burden of trauma’

The World Health Organization (WHO) has expressed its concerns over the escalating health crisis in the occupied Palestinian territory, including the West Bank, where attacks on health infrastructure and increased restrictions on movement are obstructing access to health care”.

At least 547 Palestinians have been killed in a spike in violence in West Bank since October 7.

“In addition, over 5,200 people, 800 of them children, have been injured, adding to the growing burden of trauma and emergency care at already strained health facilities.” said the WHO in a statement.

“As of 28 May, WHO has documented 480 attacks on health care in the West Bank since 7 October 2023, resulting in 16 deaths and 95 injuries. The attacks affected 54 health facilities, 20 mobile clinics and 319 ambulances.

“The closure of checkpoints, arbitrary obstructions, and detentions of health workers, rising insecurity, as well as the siege and closure of entire towns and communities has made movement within the West Bank increasingly restricted, impeding access to health facilities. Extensive infrastructure and housing damage, particularly in the northern West Bank, have compounded the situation by obstructing access for ambulances and first-aid responders.”

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Eating pigeon food and no medication for diabetes: MSF

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has shared a video with testimonies from colleagues describing what life has been like in Gaza over the last few months.

One MSF logistician said despite the shelling and destruction, he has been looking for food for the last four months so that he and his children can survive, but they “still haven’t found anything”.”We reached the point where we searched for … pigeon food, anything that we could eat,” he said. “After about four or five months, some food became available – canned food and a small amount of lentils and rice. But the prices are extremely high.”

He added that he can’t find treatment for his hypertension and diabetes and that people in need of medication have resorted to using alternative herbal solutions.

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Casualties reported in Israeli drone strike in Lebanon

Lebanese media is reporting that an Israeli drone strike has hit a motorcycle between the southern towns of Bint Jbeil and Aitaroun in southern Lebanon and casualties are feared.

Over the past few days, attacks between Hezbollah and Israeli forces have increased, following the latter’s assassination of Taleb Abdullah, the most senior Hezbollah commander killed since October 8.

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At least one baby killed as Israel’s targeting of homes in Gaza continues

Earlier today, at least 19 Palestinians, including at least one baby, were killed and 50 others were wounded in Israeli air strikes targeting homes in eastern Gaza City, Wafa news agency reported.

Israeli jets targeted three homes in the Tuffah and Shujayea neighbourhoods in Gaza City, resulting in the casualties, including children and women.

Anadolu Agency quoted witnesses as saying that an Israeli jet struck the home in Tuffah when dozens of people were inside.

The Palestinian Civil Defence rescue teams removed the body of a baby and transferred dozens of injured victims to a hospital, the witnesses said, adding that volunteers continue to look for the injured under the rubble.

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Israel’s attacks in West Bank ‘adding to the growing burden of trauma’

The World Health Organization (WHO) has expressed its concerns over the escalating health crisis in the occupied Palestinian territory, including the West Bank, where attacks on health infrastructure and increased restrictions on movement are obstructing access to health care”.

At least 547 Palestinians have been killed in a spike in violence in West Bank since October 7.

“In addition, over 5,200 people, 800 of them children, have been injured, adding to the growing burden of trauma and emergency care at already strained health facilities.” said the WHO in a statement.

“As of 28 May, WHO has documented 480 attacks on health care in the West Bank since 7 October 2023, resulting in 16 deaths and 95 injuries. The attacks affected 54 health facilities, 20 mobile clinics and 319 ambulances.

“The closure of checkpoints, arbitrary obstructions, and detentions of health workers, rising insecurity, as well as the siege and closure of entire towns and communities has made movement within the West Bank increasingly restricted, impeding access to health facilities. Extensive infrastructure and housing damage, particularly in the northern West Bank, have compounded the situation by obstructing access for ambulances and first-aid responders.”

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Eating pigeon food and no medication for diabetes: MSF

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has shared a video with testimonies from colleagues describing what life has been like in Gaza over the last few months.

One MSF logistician said despite the shelling and destruction, he has been looking for food for the last four months so that he and his children can survive, but they “still haven’t found anything”.”We reached the point where we searched for … pigeon food, anything that we could eat,” he said. “After about four or five months, some food became available – canned food and a small amount of lentils and rice. But the prices are extremely high.”

He added that he can’t find treatment for his hypertension and diabetes and that people in need of medication have resorted to using alternative herbal solutions.

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Children in Gaza suffering from disease due to malnutrition

Clinical nutritionist Rana Zuaiter says children in Gaza are thirsty as the water is contaminated. She told Al Jazeera there is no food security or humanitarian aid in the besieged enclave. As a result, 90 percent of children suffer from diarrhoea, hepatitis and other diseases.

Zuaiter added that a lack of diet diversity and food insecurity are some factors driving this increase in malnutrition cases.

“One in three children is suffering from starvation. It’s a huge number of man-made starvation, which Israel uses as a weapon of war,” she said.

She urged the world to stop the air strikes and to allow food aid distribution within Gaza to prevent starvation.

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WFP says struggling to distribute food within Gaza

WFP’s Carl Skau says the main challenge for the team is not getting food to the borders but distributing it inside Gaza.

“Our main concern at the moment is in the south. Since the operation in Rafah, we’ve had to move our offices and our warehouses to Deir el-Balah further north and we are now struggling to assist hundreds of thousands of people who have been displaced from Rafah,” he said.

“Food, basic food commodities are available but we’re extremely concerned about the protection crisis and water and sanitation crisis. There is deep concern about the trajectory of the situation in the south.”

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‘Significant number’ of Gaza population will starve to death without aid

Dr Thaer Ahmad, who had volunteered at the Nasser Hospital in southern Gaza in January, said the warnings were there as early as November last year that malnutrition was increasing and emergency aid needed to enter Gaza.

“When we were there in January, we saw just how difficult it was for aid trucks to get into the Gaza Strip and get to vulnerable populations. So this is something that many NGOs, many health professionals have been warning about,” Ahmad told Al Jazeera, speaking from Washington, DC.

“You cannot just continue to allow the crisis of humanitarian aid delivery … and not expect that there are going to be consequences on the population.

“There is going to be a portion of the population that is going to die because of the lack of food. Specifically, what you see is that people – who are malnourished, who are dealing with dehydration – if they have a common cold or if they have some sort of stomach virus, they will die as a result of this because of the conditions on the ground,” he said.

“People starving to death. That’s what we are talking about, and we are talking about a significant number of the population,” he added.

“The solution is very clear and it is very simple. Get aid in. Get food in. Get water in. And that’s just not happening right now.”

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Israeli forces withdraw from Beita after raiding houses

Israeli forces have withdrawn from the town of Beita, south of Nablus in the occupied West Bank, several hours after storming it.

The forces raided the town at dawn, targeting several houses and destroying contents inside them. They used tear gas against Palestinian youth.

Fighting was also reported after Israeli forces stormed the town of Kafr Dan where military vehicles conducted patrols in its streets before storming homes inside the town.

Raids were also reported in Jenin, Qalqilya and Hebron. Two Palestinians were injured in Jalazone refugee camp north of Ramallah, one of them in a critical condition due to a head injury. Israeli forces arrested one person.

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Rescuers attempting to retrieve women, children buried under rubble in Shujayea

Al Jazeera’s Hani Mahmoud

Reporting from Deir el-Balah, Gaza Strip

Not only are we seeing more people killed inside homes because of the ongoing bombing, but the enforced starvation and lack of hydration is threatening the lives of many people in the northern part of the Gaza Strip.

Overnight attacks targeted three residential homes in Shujayea neighbourhood in eastern Gaza City. Witnesses told us two of these homes were occupied by displaced families from different parts of Shujayea neighbourhood.

Fourteen people have already been pulled from under the rubble. Paramedics and civil defence rescuers are expecting five more to be pulled out.

The Israeli military continues to bomb areas in the west part of Rafah city, Tal as-Sultan and in the vicinity of the Emirati field hospital, targeting the outskirts of an evacuation centre that’s an UNRWA school.

It’s causing a great deal of panic and concern as those people are unable to leave these areas. There are quadcoptors and surveillance drones in the entire area. What they do is chase people and shoot at them.

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‘Direct targeting’: Attacks on Gaza’s schools continue to increase

More than 76 percent of schools in the Gaza Strip require “full reconstruction or major rehabilitation” to be functional in the future, according to a new assessment.

Based on satellite imagery collected in May, the new Education Cluster assessment highlights a “continuous spike in the direct targeting of schools” the latest Gaza situation update from the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reports.

Of the school buildings used as shelters for displaced people in Gaza, 69 percent have been directly hit or damaged in attacks, OCHA reports. And more than 96 percent of the schools directly attacked – 296 in total – were located in areas subject to Israeli military evacuation orders, OCHA adds.

Talal al-Hathal, director of the Al Fakhoora Programme at the Education Above All Foundation in Qatar, said Israelis attacks have ravaged Gaza’s educational sector.

Such attacks are “shameful as we consider the global education crisis where we see that more than 250 million children are out of school globally”, al-Hathal told Al Jazeera.

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Lack of water making near-famine conditions across Gaza worse

Israeli forces have destroyed nearly all the water wells in northern Gaza. The lack of water is making the near-famine conditions across Gaza worse as Palestinians struggle to access clean drinking water.

Footage shared online, and verified by Al Jazeera, shows a stampede and crowding among the displaced people at UNRWA schools trying to get drinking water on a daily basis.

“See how people suffer from lack of water and the spread of sewage, shelter and other challenges, including lack of food and aid,” one of the displaced people said.

“I came for several days trying to get water but wasn’t successful,” said an elderly woman. “We were displaced from Beit Hanoon after we lost our homes and now in Jabalia camp, we beg for water.”

One woman said that “the Israelis destroyed not only our homes but water wells too … we cannot feed our children and now we cannot find a drop of clean water”.

“This is not life. Even animals have a better life compared to us. We are butchered, if not by the Israeli bombardment, by starvation and lack of water,” she added.

In addition to wells, Israeli strikes and incursions destroyed desalination units and its troops are blocking fuel. Some Palestinians have resorted to drinking seawater.

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US to temporarily move aid pier off Gaza’s coast

The US Central Command (CENTCOM) said a pier set up on Gaza’s coast to provide humanitarian supplies would be temporarily removed due to predicted high waves and stormy seas.

It said the pier would be towed to the southern Israeli port of Ashdod, about 30km (19 miles) away.

The pier was damaged by bad weather in May, shortly after its completion. Due to strong waves, four US military ships anchored in the area broke free from their moorings.

US media reported that last week, the Israeli military used a helicopter on a beach “not far from” the pier to evacuate three of the captives and the soldiers who freed them. The Israeli military intensively bombed the Nuseirat area during the operation, killing at least 274 people, including dozens of women and children, according to Palestinian authorities in Gaza.