Live blog: Israeli attacks kill 900 civilians, including 260 children in Gaza

Live blog: Israeli attacks kill 900 civilians, including 260 children in Gaza

The Israel-Palestine conflict escalated on October 7, 2023 when Hamas fighters launched an offensive in Israel.
The Israel-Palestine conflict has left hundreds of people dead and thousands displaced. / Photo: AA

20:17GMT – 260 children among people killed in Gaza

Israeli army attacks in Gaza have killed 900 Palestinians, including 260 children and 200 women, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.

Israel has also cut water and electricity supplies to Gaza, worsening the blockaded enclave’s already dire humanitarian situation.

Home to nearly 2.2 million people, Gaza has already been reeling under a crippling Israeli siege since 2007.

The situation escalated with a Saturday surprise attack from Palestinian group Hamas in Gaza on southern Israeli towns. Israel retaliated with massive air strikes in Gaza and placed the enclave under total blockade.

18:44 GMT — Turkish, Russian leaders discuss 'worrying' Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin have discussed the course of the current "worrying" conflict between Israel and Palestine.

In a phone call, Erdogan and Putin also exchanged views on measures to prevent any spread of the tension, Türkiye's Communications Directorate said in a statement.

The leaders also evaluated what initiatives would be taken to meet humanitarian needs in the region.

Erdogan told Putin that targeting civilian settlements is worrying and that such initiatives are not welcomed by Türkiye, according to the statement.

18:42 GMT — US ready to move 'additional assets' to Mideast: Biden

US President Joe Biden has said that he is ready to order extra military forces to the Middle East.

"The United States has also enhanced our military force posture in the region to strengthen our deterrence," Biden said in a White House speech, referring to the dispatch of an aircraft carrier group to the eastern Mediterranean.

"We stand ready to move in additional assets as needed."

18:39 GMT — Hamas armed wing claims rocket fire from south Lebanon

Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of the Palestinian group Hamas, has claimed rocket fire from south Lebanon, a statement said.

The group carried out a "rocket bombardment" on Israel's western Galilee area, according to the statement published on the Hamas channel on the Telegram messaging app, adding the group was "fulfilling its duty".

18:07 GMT – More than 200,000 Palestinians flee Gaza

At least 200,000 Palestinians have been displaced in Gaza amid ongoing Israeli airstrikes, the UN humanitarian office said on Tuesday.

“In Gaza, at least 200,000 of the 2.2 million residents have been displaced after fleeing for fear of their lives or their houses were destroyed by airstrikes,” the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a statement.

“Most of them are taking shelter in UNRWA (UN Relief and Works Agency) schools, at least two of which have already been damaged by airstrikes in the area,” it added.

17:25 GMT - Nigeria suspends flights of pilgrims due to Hamas-Israeli fighting

More than 300 Nigerian pilgrims have been evacuated from Jerusalem following increased hostility between Hamas militants and Israel.

"I am happy to announce that we have successfully airlifted and returned all three hundred and ten (310) citizens who went on pilgrimage to Jerusalem," Lagos state Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said on Tuesday.

The head of Lagos State Christian Pilgrim Warfare Board, Florence Gbafe, said in a statement that flights for pilgrims have been suspended.

“To all on the second batch of pilgrimage to Israel, kindly note that the pilgrimage is now on hold due to the war situation in Israel. Further information will be communicated as and when due," she said.

15:36 GMT - Israel threatens Egypt on Gaza aid delivery

Israel threatened Egypt that it would bomb any aid convoy heading to the Gaza Strip amid ongoing Israeli airstrikes on Palestinian territory.

The warning was conveyed to Egypt on Tuesday, Israeli Channel 13 reported without further details.

Egyptian authorities have so far made no comment on Israel's threat.

Israeli army spokesman Richard Hecht earlier advised Palestinians in the Gaza Strip to leave for Egypt amid heavy bombardment in Gaza, before revising the recommendation.

15:07 GMT - Clear evidence of war crimes: UN

The UN commission of inquiry announced that it has "clear evidence" that war crimes may have been committed in latest violence in Israel and Gaza.

"There is already clear evidence that war crimes may have been committed in the latest explosion of violence in Israel and Gaza, and all those who have violated international law and targeted civilians must be held accountable for their crimes," said the UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem and Israel, on Tuesday.

The commission said that it has been collecting and preserving evidence of alleged war crimes committed by all sides since Saturday.

13:06 GMT - Gaza border largely secured: Israel

Israel said it had largely secured the Gaza border and was evacuating nearby towns where the bodies of 1,500 Hamas militants had been recovered by Tuesday after days of fighting.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned Israel's military campaign was only the start of a sustained conflict to destroy Hamas and "change the Middle East".

Fears of a regional conflagration have surged amid expectations of a looming Israeli ground attack in Gaza.

12:53 GMT - Egypt-Israel border suffers aerial attacks

Gaza's Rafah border crossing with Egypt, its only one that bypasses Israel, was hit by an Israeli air strike Tuesday for the second time in 24 hours, an AFP photographer reported.

Witnesses said the strike hit the no-man's land between the Egyptian and Palestinian gates, damaging the hall on the Palestinian side.

Contracted by the AFP, the Israel military said it could "neither confirm or deny" any strike on the crossing "at this point". Egyptian group Sinai for Human Rights said the strike had prompted the closure of the crossing.

12:20 GMT- Israel-Hamas conflict is sign of US policy failure: Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin said the sharp escalation of the Israel-Palestinian conflict was a vivid example of the United States' policy failure in the Middle East.

Putin told the visiting Iraqi prime minister on Tuesday that Washington had tried to monopolise the search for a settlement in the region.

"I think many people would agree with me that it's a clear example of the failure of US politics in the Middle East," Putin said.

He also spoke of the "necessity to implement the decisions of the UN Security Council on the creation of an independent sovereign Palestinian state."

11:13 GMT: Palestine, Israel foreign ministers invited to EU meeting

The European Union foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, says he has invited the foreign ministers of Palestine and Israel to Tuesday afternoon’s foreign ministerial meeting to express their views on the latest developments in Israel and Gaza.

In his announcement on X, Borrell said he has invited Israel’s Eli Cohen to join the meeting and asked Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki to “address the meeting and present the views of the Palestinian Authority.”

The invitations came a day after Borrell announced that the bloc’s assistance to Palestine would continue without suspension. The announcement came in response to concerns that any suspension of payments would adversely affect the Palestinian population and potentially encourage more turmoil.

Haman attack reaction

10:41 GMT: More Israeli flights to bring in reserve soldiers

Israel's airports authority said on Tuesday El Al and Israir Airlines have added more flights to bring reservists back to the country and limited flights to Ben Gurion Airport's Terminal 3 due to security concerns.

The flights come after Israel said on Monday it had called up an unprecedented 300,000 reservists and warned residents of Gaza to evacuate in a sign it could be planning a ground assault in response.

Humanitarian groups say there say there are needs both in Gaza and Israel. Photo AA

10:14 GMT: ''Aid groups work under difficult conditions''

Humanitarian groups say they are scrambling to assist civilians caught in the war between Israel and Hamas and determine what aid operations are still safe to continue, with efforts complicated by an intensified blockade of Gaza and ongoing fighting.

Hundreds of people have been killed and thousands wounded on both sides, and aid groups operating in the region say there are needs both in Gaza and Israel.

More than 2 tonnes of medical supplies from the Egyptian Red Crescent have been sent to Gaza, and efforts are underway to organise food and other deliveries, according to an Egyptian military official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

9:43 GMT: Palestinian football team quits tournament

Palestine's football team has pulled out of a tournament in Malaysia, the Southeast Asian nation's football association said Tuesday, citing the conflict between Israel and Hamas militants.

"The Palestinian team had to withdraw from participating... because they could not fly to Kuala Lumpur due to the tense situation... at the moment," the Malaysian football association said in a statement.

The team was due to play in the Merdeka Cup friendly tournament in the capital, Kuala Lumpur, but the opening match against Tajikistan set for Friday has been cancelled.

9:05 GMT- Humanitarian corridor needed in Gaza: WHO

The World Health Organisation called on Tuesday for a humanitarian corridor to be established into and out of the Gaza, which has been placed under total siege by Israel.

"WHO is calling for an end to the violence. A humanitarian corridor is needed to reach people with critical medical supplies," WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic told a press briefing in Geneva.

8:48 GMT: Austria plans evacuation of citizens in Israel

Austria is arranging an evacuation of its citizens from Israel by military transport aircraft on Wednesday, Chancellor Karl Nehammer said on Tuesday.

Roughly 200 Austrians have so far informed the Austrian authorities that they wish to leave Israel, Nehammer told Puls 24 television.

"It is happening in cooperation with the Austrian armed forces. A transport aircraft is available, and the mission will begin tomorrow," Nehammer said, adding that the flight would be to Cyprus.

8:29 GMT - Israel's Gaza siege banned under international law: UN

Israel's total siege of the Gaza is banned under international law, the United Nations human rights chief said on Tuesday.

"The imposition of sieges that endanger the lives of civilians by depriving them of goods essential for their survival is prohibited under international humanitarian law," Volker Turk said in a statement.

Israeli air operations have struck residential buildings, including large tower blocks, as well as schools and U.N. buildings across Gaza, resulting in civilian casualties, the United Nations Human Rights chief, Volker Turk said citing information gathered by his office.

Gaza has suffered heavy bombardment since the conflict began. Photo AFP

8:25 GMT: Three Palestinian journalists killed in Israel strike

Three Palestinian journalists were killed on Tuesday morning in an Israeli air strike that hit a residential building near Gaza City's fishing port, a media union and an official

The journalists' syndicate announced "the martyrdom of three journalists in the Gaza Strip in the ongoing Israeli aggression".

The head of Gaza's Hamas-run government's media office, Salameh Maarouf, identified the three as Said al-Taweel, Mohammed Sobboh, and Hisham Nawajhah.

7:55 GMT: UN refugee agency in Gaza ''damaged''

The United Nations Agency for Palestine Refugees says it’s ‘’Gaza Field Office, where national and international staff are present, suffered collateral damage due to airstrikes in the Rimal area in the centre of Gaza City.''

The United Nations Agency for Palestine Refugees also announced on X that it is distributing bread to displaced people in shelters across Gaza.

‘’Mass displacement has escalated in the past 24 hours across Gaza, reaching over 187,518, and is expected to increase further. The conditions are difficult, with some shelters overcrowded and with limited availability of potable water’’ it said in the statement.

137,500 people sheltering in 83 UN agency schools in Gaza. Photo: UNRWA

7:46 GMT: Israel activates 300,000 reserve soldiers

Israeli military says it has activated 300,000 reservists in a massive mobilisation, raising questions if it would launch a ground assault in Gaza.

Israeli warplanes pounded downtown Gaza City, home to Hamas' centres of government, with relentless bombardments into early Tuesday after Israel’s prime minister vowed retaliation against the Islamic militant group that would “reverberate for generations.”

The 4-day-old war has already claimed at least 1,600 lives, as Israel saw gun battles in the streets of its own towns for the first time in decades and neighbourhoods in Gaza were reduced to rubble.

5:30 GMT- Palestinian death toll mounts

The number of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in Gaza has risen to 704, the Gaza-based Health Ministry has said.

The ministry said the death toll includes 143 children and 105 women. It said the number of wounded has risen to around 4,000.

Separately at least 900 Israelis have been killed and over 2,600 others wounded in the fighting, according to the Israeli Health Ministry.

5:00 GMT - Israeli army commander killed

The Israeli army has announced that the deputy commander of its 300th Brigade was killed during clashes with gunmen who crossed the border from Lebanon.

Lieutenant Colonel Alim Abdallah, 40, hailed from the Druze village of Yanuh-Jat in northern Israel.

Israel's Channel 12 reported that three Israeli soldiers were also wounded in a clash with gunmen who infiltrated the border.

4:30 GMT - Western countries warn Iran

The United States, France, Germany, the UK and Italy have called on Iran to "not spread the conflict beyond Gaza" after an attack by Hamas on Israel, according to a joint statement issued by the French presidency.

"We further call on other extremist groups, and any State that may seek to take advantage of such situation, and in particular Iran, not to seek to exploit this situation for other ends, or to spread the conflict beyond Gaza," said the joint statement issued by the Elysee.

TRT Afrika and agencies