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Israel-Gaza war live: Israeli forces bombard Khan Younis as Gaza officials say nearly 200 killed in 24 hours

Israel-Gaza war live: Israeli forces bombard Khan Younis as Gaza officials say nearly 200 killed in 24 hours


Key events

Israeli forces pound Gaza as Palestinian officials say nearly 200 killed in a day

Fierce Israeli tank fire and aerial bombing struck Khan Younis in the Gaza Strip on Friday night, residents said, after nearly 200 people were reported killed in 24 hours in Israel’s campaign against Hamas militants.

Reuters reports that planes also carried out a series of airstrikes on the Nuseirat camp in central Gaza, according to medics and Palestinian journalists.

Israeli forces have been pounding Khan Younis in preparation for an anticipated further advance into the main southern city, swathes of which they captured in early December.

The defence minister, Yoav Gallant, said troops were reaching Hamas command centres and arms depots. The Israeli military said it had destroyed a tunnel complex in the basement of one of the houses of the Hamas leader for Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, in Gaza City.

Health authorities in Hamas-run Gaza said 187 Palestinians were confirmed killed in Israeli strikes in the 24-hour period, raising the overall toll to 21,507. Thousands more bodies are feared to be buried in the ruins of neighbourhoods.

Welcome to our live coverage of the Israel-Gaza war with me, Adam Fulton. It’s 9.30am in Gaza City and Tel Aviv on this 30 December. Here’s a rundown on the latest developments.

Intense Israeli tank fire and aerial bombing hit the southern Gaza city of Khan Younis on Friday night, residents said, after nearly 200 people were reported killed in 24 hours in Israel’s offensive in the territory.

Planes also carried out a series of airstrikes on the Nuseirat camp in central Gaza, according to medics and Palestinian journalists.

Members of the Palestine Red Crescent Society carry a casualty on a stretcher to an ambulance in Khan Younis, Gaza. Photograph: Palestine Red Crescent Society/Reuters

Israel’s defence minister said troops were reaching Hamas command centres and arms depots, while the Israeli military said it had destroyed a tunnel complex in the basement of one of the houses of the Hamas leader for Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, in Gaza City.

More on that story shortly. In other news:

  • South Africa has launched a case against Israel at the UN’s international court of justice (ICJ) accusing the state of committing genocide in its military campaign in Gaza. Israel responded to the allegations “with disgust”, calling South Africa’s case a “blood libel” and urging the ICJ to reject it. Any case at the ICJ is likely to take years to resolve, but South Africa has called for the court to convene in the next few days to issue “provisional measures” calling for a ceasefire.

  • The UN’s top aid official has “strongly condemned” reports that Israeli troops opened fire on an aid convoy in the Gaza Strip. The director of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) earlier on Friday accused Israel of firing on an aid convoy on Thursday as it returned from northern Gaza along a route designated by the Israeli army. Martin Griffiths, the UN emergency relief coordinator, said the convoy was fired upon despite being “clearly marked”, adding: “Attacks on humanitarian workers are unlawful.”

  • Qatari mediators have told Israel that Hamas has “agreed in principle” to resume talks on the release of further hostages held in Gaza, according to a report by Israel’s Walla news on Friday. But a senior Hamas official later told Al Jazeera there was currently no talk of a hostage exchange before fighting in Gaza stops. Separately, a Hamas official said a delegation from the militant group was due in Cairo on Friday to look at an Egyptian plan for a ceasefire that would end the war in Gaza.

  • At least 21,507 people have been killed in Gaza since the war with Israel broke out nearly 12 weeks ago, included 187 fatalities over the previous 24 hours, according to Friday’s figures from the territory’s Hamas-run health ministry. At least 308 people were killed while in UN shelters in Gaza since the war began, the UNRWA said.

  • The Biden administration has again bypassed congressional review for weapons sale to Israel. The US state department said the secretary of state, Antony Blinken, informed Congress that he had made a second emergency determination covering a $147.5m sale for equipment required to make the 155mm shells that Israel has already purchased function.

  • The head of the World Health Organisation (WHO) said he was “very concerned” about the growing threat of infectious diseases facing Gaza’s people. Nearly 180,00 people were suffering upper respiratory infections and about 136,400 cases of diarrhoea – half among children under five – had been recorded since mid-October, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a social media post.

  • Israel detained at least 14 Palestinians, including a child, during its latest raids inside the Israeli-occupied West Bank, the Palestinian news agency Wafa said on Friday. A day earlier, the UN published a report deploring what it said was a “rapid deterioration” of human rights in the West Bank and urged Israeli authorities to end violence against the Palestinian population there.

  • The UN secretary general, António Guterres, is “gravely concerned” about a further spillover of the Gaza conflict which could have “devastating” consequences for the entire region, his spokesperson has said. In a statement on Friday, Guterres warned of a “continued risk of wider regional conflagration” the longer the conflict in Gaza continued.

An Israeli artillery unit fires from a position near the Israeli-Gaza border in southern Israel
An Israeli artillery unit fires from a position near the Israeli-Gaza border in southern Israel. Photograph: Atef Safadi/EPA
  • Three Palestinian brothers who were detained by Israeli soldiers in Gaza have said they and other men were beaten, stripped to their underwear, burnt with cigarettes and subjected to other forms of mistreatment during their detention. Sobhi Yaseen and his brothers Sady and Ibrahim told Reuters they were taken by the Israeli military from their homes in northern Gaza early this month and held for up to two weeks. In response, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) spokesperson’s office said it was operating “to dismantle Hamas’ military capabilities” and detainees were treated in accordance with international law.

  • The IDF said it located and destroyed a hideout belonging to Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar in northern Gaza. An investigation by IDF troops found the apartment, located on the outskirts of Gaza City, as well as a large tunnel system under it which was part of a network used by senior Hamas members, an IDF spokesperson said.

  • Iran announced it had hanged four people it claims were engaged in “sabotage” on behalf of Israel. The three men and one woman had been sentenced to death on charges of “moharebeh”, or “waging war against God”, and “corruption on Earth” through their “collaboration with the Zionist regime”, and were executed in Iran’s north-west province of West Azerbaijan.



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