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Israeli bombardments continue to target the Gaza Strip

Photo: Eyad Baba Agence France-Presse A Palestinian woman and child stand in the debris caused by an Israeli bombardment in Khan Yunis.

France Media Agency in the Gaza Strip

Posted at 3:14 p.m. Updated at 4:12 p.m.

  • Middle East

Israeli bombings targeted the Gaza Strip devastated by more than eight months of war on Sunday, at a time when Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant visited the United States in full arms dispute between the two allies.

Meanwhile pressure is mounting in Israel, where tens of thousands of people demonstrated on Saturday evening to denounce the conduct of the war by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and call for the return of hostages still held in Gaza.

The war was sparked by an unprecedented bloody attack by the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas in the southern Israel on October 7, during which dozens of people were kidnapped and taken to the neighboring Gaza Strip.

Israel has vowed to destroy Hamas, which seized power in Gaza in 2007, and launched a major offensive against the Palestinian territory under siege since October 9 by the Israeli army.

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According to witnesses, shells again targeted the east, west and center of the town of Rafah in southern Gaza on Sunday, where the Israeli army has been carrying out a ground offensive since May 7. Airstrikes hit Gaza City (north) and tanks bombed the Nousseirat camp (center).

Fighter planes carried out raids on Saturday against “ dozens of terrorist targets in the Gaza Strip, including military structures and infrastructure,” the Israeli military said, reporting “targeted operations” in Rafah. “Terrorists were eliminated in close combat and by sniper and drone fire” in central Gaza.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that the “intense” fighting in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, where the Israeli army is leading a ground offensive, is “about to end”. “The intense phase of the fighting against Hamas is about to end […] This does not mean that the war is about to end, but the war, in its intense phase, is about to end in Rafah,” Netanyahu said in an interview with Israel's Channel 14.

“After the end of the intense phase, we will be able to redeploy certain forces towards the north, and we will do it […]”, added the Prime Minister, assuring that “the objective is to recover the hostages and uproot the Hamas regime in Gaza”.

“Crucial” talks in Washington

The Hamas attack on October 7 resulted in the deaths of 1,194 people, mostly civilians, according to an AFP count based on official data. That day, 251 people were kidnapped. In total, 116 are still held in Gaza, of which 41 have died according to the army.

Israeli military operations in Gaza have so far left 37,598 dead, including at least 47 in the past 24 hours, mostly civilians, according to data from the Hamas-run local government's health ministry.

While the relationship between Mr. Netanyahu and the White House are experiencing a new episode of tension, Yoav Gallant left for Washington, in order, according to him, “to discuss developments in Gaza and Lebanon”.

The Israel's northern front, along with Lebanon, has been the scene of escalating shootings between the Israeli army and Hezbollah, a Hamas ally, and belligerent rhetoric between the two sides has raised fears of a full-scale war.

On Sunday, the Shiite movement supported by Iran announced that it had targeted two Israeli military sites using explosive drones, seriously injuring a soldier, in response to the death of a leader of an allied Islamist group, in an Israeli strike in eastern Lebanon.

The movement also released a new video showing what it says are sites in Israel with their coordinates, without them identify, five days after revealing images of Haifa taken according to him by a drone which flew over this large port in northern Israel.

Referring to relations with Washington, Mr. Gallant assured in a statement that “ties with the United States are more important than ever.” “Our talks with American officials are crucial for [the continuation of] the war,” he said.

There is also the dispute over US arms deliveries, after Benjamin Netanyahu criticized a delay in their transfer to Israel.

But on Sunday, Mr Netanyahu declared that this “dispute” with Washington will be “resolved in the near future” at a meeting of his government. “[…] In light of what I have heard in recent days, I hope and believe that this matter will be resolved in the near future. »

“Drive out this government”

Mr. Netanyahu, who says Israel is engaged in a “war for its existence,” is under pressure at home.

On Saturday in Tel Aviv, more than 150,000 people according to organizers chanted slogans against the Netanyahu government, demanding early elections and the return of hostages, the largest rally since the start of the war.

Israeli bombardments continue to target the Gaza Strip

Photo: Jack Guez Agence France-Presse On Saturday in Tel Aviv, more than 150,000 people according to organizers chanted slogans against the Netanyahu government.

“The only way to achieve change here is to oust this government, to oust the extremists,” said Maya Fischer, a 36-year-old protester. “It is time to end the war, bring back the hostages and save lives, both on the Israeli and Palestinian sides. »

Negotiations for a ceasefire have stalled and Mr. Netanyahu says he will continue the war until the destruction of Hamas, which he considers terrorist along with the United States and the European Union .

In the Palestinian territory, where some 2.4 million people are crowded together, the Israeli offensive has caused a humanitarian disaster with a threat of famine according to the UN.

More than a million people are constantly on the move “in the hope of finding a safe place in the Gaza Strip while” no place y is safe,” the World Health Organization said. »

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116