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Stay updates | Gaza dying toll tops 17,700 and Yemen rebels threaten ship visitors to Israel

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The Palestinian dying toll in Gaza from the Israel-Hamas battle has surpassed 17,700, round two-thirds of them ladies and youngsters, in line with the Well being Ministry within the Hamas-controlled territory.

Israel’s floor offensive in southern Gaza Strip intensified on Saturday with additional airstrikes and artillery fireplace, a day after america blocked a U.N. decision calling for a cease-fire.

Israel says 97 of its troopers have died within the floor offensive after Hamas raided southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing about 1,200 individuals, principally civilians, and taking about 240 hostages.

Amid issues a few wider battle, Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen threatened to forestall any ship heading to Israeli ports from passing via the Purple Sea and Arabian Sea till meals and medication can enter Gaza freely. With solely a trickle of humanitarian help reaching a small portion of Gaza, residents have reported extreme meals shortages.

Regardless of rising worldwide stress, President Joe Biden’s administration stays against an open-ended cease-fire, arguing it will allow Hamas to proceed posing a menace to Israel. The administration accredited the emergency sale to Israel of almost 14,000 rounds of tank ammunition value greater than $106 million, the State Division mentioned.

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— U.S. vetoes U.N. decision backed by many countries demanding speedy humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza

— ‘Shadows of kids:’ For the youngest hostages, life strikes ahead in whispers

— Bloodshed, concern, starvation, desperation: Palestinians attempt to survive battle’s new chapter in southern Gaza

— Discover extra of AP’s protection at https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war

Right here’s what’s taking place within the battle:

BEIRUT — Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen threatened Saturday to forestall any ship heading to Israeli ports from passing via the Purple Sea and the Arabian Sea till sufficient meals and medication are allowed into the Gaza Strip.

Iran-backed fighters in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen have claimed accountability for assaults on Israeli and U.S. targets for the reason that Israel-Hamas battle broke out.

Over the previous weeks, the Houthis have attacked a number of vessels within the Purple Sea, in addition to launching drones and missiles focusing on Israel.

On Dec. 3, ballistic missiles fired by the Houthis struck three business ships within the Purple Sea, whereas a U.S. warship shot down three drones in self-defense in the course of the hourslong assault.

In November, the Houthis seized a car transport ship linked to Israel within the Purple Sea off Yemen. The rebels nonetheless maintain the vessel close to the port metropolis of Hodeida.

Houthi army spokesman Brig. Gen. Yahya Saree mentioned in a televised speech Saturday night that each one ships heading to Israel, regardless of their nationality, will probably be a goal until help is allowed to enter Gaza freely.

“We warn all ships and firms towards coping with Israeli ports,” Saree mentioned. He mentioned Houthis don’t have any intention to interrupt worldwide commerce “aside from the ships that carry merchandise to Israeli ports.”

He mentioned the choice goes into impact instantly.

NEW YORK — The Worldwide Rescue Committee and 7 different help businesses have referred to as for the U.N. Safety Council to move a decision calling for a right away cease-fire and the discharge of hostages held by Hamas,

The assertion late Friday got here hours after an analogous Safety Council cease-fire decision was vetoed by america.

“This was a missed alternative to cease the violence,” mentioned the joint assertion by help teams together with Mercy Corps, Oxfam and Save the Youngsters.

“The one means for civilian lives to be protected and for satisfactory humanitarian help to be offered is for the preventing to cease,” the teams mentioned.

BERLIN — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu mentioned the bottom offensive in southern Gaza with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in a telephone name on Saturday, Scholz’s workplace mentioned.

The 2 leaders “spoke concerning the mandatory efforts for the best attainable safety of civilians and a considerable enchancment of the humanitarian state of affairs of individuals within the Gaza Strip,” in line with an announcement.

It added that Scholz “harassed that extra humanitarian help should attain individuals within the Gaza Strip and this should occur on a dependable foundation,” and that the leaders mentioned the state of affairs within the West Financial institution and “acts of violence by settlers.”

The assertion doesn’t specify who initiated the decision.

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip — A number of males and a teenage boy launched from 5 days of detention and interrogation by Israeli troops mentioned Saturday that they had been overwhelmed, given solely minimal water and sometimes prevented from utilizing the bathroom.

They spoke to The Related Press at a hospital within the central Gaza city of Deir al-Balah. A number of had bruises on their our bodies or deep cuts from zip ties.

The Israeli army had no speedy remark when requested concerning the alleged abuse.

The detainees shed extra gentle on what seems to be a widening military follow of rounding up teenage boys and males as troops sweep via neighborhoods. Earlier this week, pictures emerged exhibiting troopers guarding dozens of males who had been kneeling or sitting within the streets, stripped all the way down to their underwear, with fingers tied behind their backs.

A authorities spokesman mentioned Friday that these being rounded up had been being interrogated to find out if that they had ties to Hamas militants.

The detainees launched Saturday mentioned that they had been pulled out of a constructing within the Shujaiyah space of Gaza Metropolis, a scene of intense battles in latest days.

A type of freed, Osama Oula mentioned troops ordered all males to come back all the way down to the road of their underwear. He mentioned the boys had been had been taken to a yard, handcuffed and dropped off at a warehouse.

Throughout days of questioning, the boys had been overwhelmed and compelled to stroll or sleep on uncooked rice, inflicting nice ache, he mentioned.

One other man, Ahmad Nimr Salman, mentioned older males affected by diabetes, hypertension or coronary heart issues had been ignored once they requested troopers to take away their zip ties. Salman confirmed his swollen fingers from the zip ties that left clear darkish marks on his wrists.

Salman mentioned his 17-year-old son Amjad continues to be held by the troops.

Troopers would ask the detainees if they’re with Hamas. If the reply was no, “they might slap or kick us,” he mentioned.

After 5 days, the group was launched and informed to stroll south. Ten freed detainees arrived on the hospital in Deir al-Balah on Saturday after flagging down an ambulance.

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s administration has accredited the emergency sale to Israel of almost 14,000 rounds of tank ammunition value greater than $106 million because it intensifies its army operations within the southern Gaza Strip, the State Division mentioned Saturday.

The division mentioned it had notified Congress of the sale late Friday after Secretary of State Antony Blinken decided that “an emergency exists that requires the speedy sale” of the munitions within the U.S. nationwide safety curiosity.

The emergency dedication implies that the acquisition will bypass the congressional overview requirement for overseas army gross sales. Such determinations are uncommon, however not unprecedented, when administrations see an pressing want for weapons to be delivered with out ready for congressional approval.

“America is dedicated to the safety of Israel, and it’s important to U.S. nationwide pursuits to help Israel to develop and keep a robust and prepared self-defense functionality,” the division mentioned in an announcement. “Israel will use the improved functionality as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland protection.”

The sale is value $106.5 million and contains 13,981 120 mm Excessive Explosive Anti-Tank Multi-Function with Tracer tank cartridges in addition to U.S. help, engineering and logistics.

JERUSALEM — A nephew of a member of Israel’s Battle Cupboard has been killed whereas preventing in Gaza, dealing one other blow to the household of former army chief Gadi Eizenkot, whose son died in battle earlier this week.

The Israeli army mentioned Saturday that Sgt. Main Cohen Eizenkot, 19, died in a battle in southern Gaza.

His uncle, Gadi Eizenkot, served as army chief of employees from 2015 to 2019. He joined the newly shaped Battle Cupboard as an observer on Oct. 12.

Greater than 90 Israeli troopers have been killed to this point in fight in Gaza.

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip — Two hospitals in central and southern Gaza acquired the our bodies of 133 individuals killed in Israeli bombings over the previous 24 hours, the Well being Ministry within the Hamas-run territory mentioned Saturday.

Seventy-one our bodies had been dropped at the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Hospital within the central metropolis of Deir al-Balah. The hospital additionally acquired 160 wounded individuals, the ministry mentioned.

Dozens of individuals had been holding funeral prayers Saturday morning within the hospital’s courtyard, earlier than taking the our bodies for burial — a scene that has turn out to be routine over the previous two months of battle.

Within the southern metropolis of Khan Younis, which has been the main focus of Israel’s army operations over the previous week, Nasser Hospital acquired the our bodies of 62 individuals, the ministry mentioned.

The hospital, which is among the principal medical amenities nonetheless working in southern Gaza, additionally acquired 99 wounded individuals, the ministry added.

JERUSALEM — An Israeli man who was taken hostage by Hamas militants has died in captivity, his group introduced Saturday.

His captors mentioned Sahar Baruch was killed throughout a failed rescue mission by Israeli forces early Friday. The Israeli army has solely confirmed that two troopers had been significantly wounded in an tried hostage rescue and that no hostages had been freed.

Baruch, 25, was amongst about 240 individuals taken hostage throughout Hamas’ Oct. 7 assault on southern Israel, by which militants from Gaza additionally killed about 1,200 individuals. Baruch’s brother was killed within the assault on their group, Kibbutz Be’eri.

The kibbutz confirmed Sahar Baruch’s dying Saturday.

Greater than 130 hostages stay in captivity.

JERUSALEM — Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian man within the West Financial institution on Saturday and a second Palestinian man died from wounds he sustained in an Israeli raid the day earlier than, well being officers mentioned.

The deaths dropped at 274 the variety of Palestinians killed within the occupied territory for the reason that begin of the Israel-Hamas battle two months in the past. Many of the Palestinians had been killed throughout shootouts that the Israeli army says started throughout operations to arrest suspected militants.

The Palestinian Well being Ministry mentioned a 25-year-old man died of his wounds Saturday after being shot throughout an arrest raid within the Faraa refugee camp on Friday, bringing the dying toll there to seven. Amongst these killed was a neighborhood commander of the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade.

Additionally Saturday, Israeli forces killed a 25-year-old Palestinian man throughout a raid on his house close to town of Hebron. The army mentioned the person had shot at a army publish earlier within the week. Through the raid Saturday, the army mentioned that he attacked troopers with a knife, injuring one.

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