In the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, health officials in Gaza have reported that more than 198 Palestinians have lost their lives due to retaliatory Israeli air strikes. Additionally, over 1,610 individuals have been injured in the strikes.
Israel launched “Operation Sword of Iron” in response to Hamas’s initial incursion, which began with a series of massive rocket strikes early on a Saturday morning.
The health minister in Gaza previously declared a state of emergency in hospitals throughout the territory as medical facilities struggled to cope with the influx of casualties.
As part of “Operation Sword of Iron,” Israel conducted strikes on 20 sites in Gaza that it claimed were operated by Hamas.
Israeli media has reported that at least 40 Israelis have been killed, with around 740 people wounded due to the Hamas incursion. However, these numbers have not yet been officially confirmed. According to the latest official figures, there have been 22 Israeli deaths and 545 injuries.
Additionally, Israel’s N12 news channel reported that approximately 50 Israeli hostages were being held by Hamas gunmen in the Be’eri kibbutz, located in southern Israel near the Gaza Strip border.
Israel’s foreign ministry accused Hamas fighters of going door-to-door, targeting and murdering civilians. While these claims are currently unverified, Israeli media has reported instances of “civilian hostages” being taken to Gaza and alleged shootings of civilians on the streets.
Earlier in the day, the Palestinian state issued a statement calling for an end to the “Israeli occupation of the land and State of Palestine.” The statement highlighted the warnings against the consequences of political stalemate and daily provocations, including raids on the Al-Aqsa holy site, and stressed that security, stability, and peace in the region could only be achieved by ending the Israeli occupation.