Israel-Hamas war live: hundreds of Palestinians killed as Israel expands ground offensive ‘in all of Gaza Strip’

LIVE – Updated at 05:01

Palestinian death toll reaches more than 15,000 according to Gaza health ministry; Israeli military indicates ground offensive has spread to the south.

 

05:01

Three Israeli soldiers were killed in Gaza on Sunday, the Haaretz newspaper reported citing the Israeli military (IDF).

The IDF named the soldiers as Sgt Maj (Res) Neriya Shaer, 36, from Yavne, Sgt 1st Class (res) Ben Zussman, 22, from Jerusalem, and Sgt Binyamin Yehoshua Needham, 19, from Zichron Ya’akov.

 

04:48

US vice president Kamala Harris reiterated US concerns that extremist settler violence in the West Bank could escalate tensions further in a phone call with Israeli President Isaac Herzog, the White House has said in a statement.

While emphasising “strong US support” for Israel’s right to self-defence, “the Vice President reiterated the importance of planning for the day after the fighting ends in Gaza, and she underscored our commitment to a two-state solution,” the statement said.

israel-hamas war live: hundreds of palestinians killed as israel expands ground offensive ‘in all of gaza strip’

US vice president Kamala Harris. Photograph: Ali Haider/EPA

Harris also spoke to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, telling him that “the Palestinian people must have a clear political horizon” and reiterating “ US support for a unified West Bank and Gaza under a revitalized Palestinian Authority.”

The Palestinian Authority, which was booted out of Gaza by Hamas in 2006, has been touted by the west as the solution to a political vacuum in the territory after the war.

However many doubt its ability to govern Gaza due to its unpopularity among Palestinians and reputation for corruption. To read more about that, check out this analysis from our diplomatic correspondent Patrick Wintour.

Israel expands ground operations to ‘all of Gaza Strip’

04:41Dan Sabbagh

Israel continued with its intense bombing campaign across the north and south of Gaza for a third day since the end of the truce with Hamas, killing hundreds of Palestinians in a 24-hour period, according to local officials.

On Sunday night, the Israeli military also said it has expanded its ground operation to all of Gaza. “The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] continues to extend its ground operation against Hamas centres in all of the Gaza Strip,” spokesperson Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari told reporters in Tel Aviv. “The forces are coming face-to-face with terrorists and killing them.”

The Jabaliya refugee camp in the north was among the targets. Heavy bombing was also reported in the southern city of Khan Younis, increasingly the focus of Israeli attacks, while its military demanded further evacuation of civilians from areas of the city, telling them to head south to Rafah or to the west.

israel-hamas war live: hundreds of palestinians killed as israel expands ground offensive ‘in all of gaza strip’

A Palestinian woman walks among the rubble of houses destroyed by Israeli airstrikes in Khan Younis. Photograph: Mohammed Salem/Reuters

On Sunday night there were reports of clashes between Hamas and Israeli troops a mile from the city.

Gaza residents had said earlier on Sunday they feared an Israeli ground offensive on the southern areas was imminent. Tanks had cut off the road between Khan Younis and Deir Al-Balah in central Gaza, effectively dividing the Gaza Strip into three.

Ismael al-Thawabteh, the director general of the government media office in Gaza, told Al Jazeera that more than 700 Palestinians had been killed in a 24-hour period to noon.

The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said later that 15,523 Palestinians had been killed since the start of the war, including 316 dead and 664 wounded “in the past hours”. Seventy per cent of the dead were women and children, it said.

Read our full report:

Opening summary

04:29

The Israeli military has said it is extending its ground operation against Hamas “in all of the Gaza Strip,” in the clearest indication yet that the ground offensive in the south has begun.

“The forces are coming face-to-face with terrorists and killing them,” spokesperson Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari told reporters in Tel Aviv.

Hamas said its fighters clashed with Israeli troops about 2km from the southern city of Khan Younis, where many people had fled earlier in the conflict on Israeli orders.

Israel has now ordered civilians to evacuate some areas in and near the city and Palestinians said on Sunday they could hear tank fire and feared a new ground offensive was building.

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said 316 people had been killed between Saturday afternoon and Sunday afternoon while 664 were wounded. In total 15,523 Palestinians have been killed since 7 October, with many more thought to be under the rubble of destroyed buildings.

Other key developments:

    The Jabalia refugee camp in the north of Gaza was among the sites reported hit from the air as were the cities of Khan Younis and Rafah in the south of Gaza. Israeli government spokesperson, Eylon Levy, said the military had struck more than 400 targets over the weekend “including extensive aerial attacks in the Khan Younis area” and had also killed Hamas militants and destroyed their infrastructure in Beit Lahiya in the north.

    The UN humanitarian agency (OCHA) said that about 1.8 million people – roughly 75% of Gaza’s population – are internally displaced, up from a previous figure of 1.7 million. “However, obtaining an accurate count is challenging,” it said.

    Hospitals in southern Gaza overflowed with dead and wounded, amid what Uncief spokesperson James Elder said was “the worst worst bombardment of the war right now in south Gaza” on Sunday evening. “I feel like I’m almost failing in my ability to convey the endless killing of children here,” Elder said in a video from Nasser hospital in Khan Younis.

israel-hamas war live: hundreds of palestinians killed as israel expands ground offensive ‘in all of gaza strip’

Palestinians mourn relatives killed in Israeli strikes at the hospital in Khan Younis, southern Gaza on Sunday. Photograph: Fatima Shbair/AP

    Qatar is demanding an “immediate, comprehensive and impartial international investigation” into what its prime minister called Israeli crimes in Gaza, according to Al Jazeera. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdulrahman al-Thani also said Qatar would continue its efforts towards facilitating another truce and reaching a permanent ceasefire in the besieged enclave, Al Jazeera added.

    Israel’s military (UDF) claimed to have found about 800 shafts leading to Hamas tunnels and bunkers since the IDF began its Gaza ground operation on 27 October. It said it had destroyed more than half of them.

    The IDF also said it had killed Hamas commander Haitham Khuwajari in an airstrike. It said Khuwajari, the leader of the Shati battalion, was responsible for “numerous acts of terror” against Israel and under his command “Hamas terrorists carried out raids into Israeli territory on October 7th”.

    The Israeli army reported 17 rocket salvos from Gaza into Israel on Sunday, adding that most were intercepted and there was only slight material damage. Israel said two of its soldiers had died in combat, the first since the week-long truce expired on Friday.

    The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) called on Israel to respect the international rules of war and said he was accelerating his investigation into violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank. In a video address following a visit to Israel and Palestine, ICC chief prosecutor Karim Khan added, “In Gaza, there is no justification for doctors to perform operations without light, for children to be operated upon without anaesthetics. Imagine the pain … I was crystal clear, that this is the time to comply with the law. If Israel doesn’t comply now, they shouldn’t complain later.”

    Israeli settlers attacked two Palestinian villages in the occupied West Bank late on Saturday, killing one man and torching a car, Palestinian authorities said. The Palestinian ambulance service said a 38-year-old man in the town of Qarawat Bani Hassan, in the northern West Bank, was shot in the chest and died as residents confronted settlers and Israeli soldiers.

    Lebanon’s militant Hezbollah group said it had struck Israeli positions near the Lebanon-Israel border. Eight soldiers and three civilians were wounded by Hezbollah fire in the area of Beit Hillel, Israeli army radio reported. The IDF said its artillery struck sources of fire from Lebanon and its fighter jets struck other Hezbollah targets.

    A US air strike killed five Iraqi militants near the northern city of Kirkuk as they prepared to launch explosive projectiles at US forces in the country, three Iraqi security sources told Reuters, identifying them as members of an Iran-backed militia. A US military official confirmed a “self-defense strike on an imminent threat” that targeted a drone staging site near Kirkuk on Sunday afternoon.

    Three commercial vessels came under attack in international waters in the southern Red Sea, the US military said Sunday, as Yemen’s Houthi group claimed drone and missile attacks on two Israeli vessels in the area. The USS Carney, an American destroyer, responded to distress calls and provided assistance following missile and drone launches from Houthi-controlled territory, according to US Central Command.

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