Israel and Hamas at war: Latest news

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“Now is the time for war,” Israel’s military chief said as his country amassed tanks near the Gaza Strip ahead of a planned ground invasion to annihilate the Palestinian militant Hamas group that rules the enclave.

Washington urged Israel to protect civilians and the Red Cross warned of a humanitarian catastrophe in the enclave.

The United Nations World Food Programme said crucial supplies were running dangerously low in Gaza after Israel imposed a total blockade.

CONFLICT

* U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the Israeli government showed him photographs and videos of Hamas atrocities, including of a baby riddled with bullets, soldiers beheaded and young people burned.

* Israel’s public broadcaster Kan said the Israeli death toll had risen to more than 1,300.

* Gaza authorities said more than 1,400 Palestinians have been killed and more than 6,000 wounded.

* Gaza’s ruling Hamas militants called on Palestinians to rise up on Friday in protest at Israel’s bombardment of the enclave, urging Palestinians to march to East Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque and clash with Israeli troops in the occupied West Bank.

* Human Rights Watch accused Israel of using white phosphorus

munitions in its military operations in Gaza and Lebanon.

* Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned violence against civilians.

* Egypt said it was directing international aid flights for Gaza to an airport in Sinai near the Gaza border.

HUMAN IMPACT

* Israeli air strikes have made major cemeteries in Gaza dangerous to reach so mourning families are burying their dead in informal graveyards dug in empty lots.

* An Israeli family fears for an ailing grandmother driven off by Hamas gunmen.

* When Israel called up its reservists and declared war this week, the response was swift and overwhelming.

INTERNATIONAL

* Britain is deploying two Royal Navy ships and surveillance aircraft to the eastern Mediterranean to support Israel and reinforce regional stability.

* What have U.S. presidential candidates said about Hamas’ attack on Israel?

* Israel, the White House and some rival Republican presidential candidates criticized former U.S. President Donald Trump after he described Hezbollah as “smart” and said Netanyahu “was not prepared” for the attack.

* Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan told the German chancellor that a sovereign Palestinian state should be established for a lasting solution to the conflict, the Turkish presidency said.

* French police used teargas and water cannon to break up a banned rally in support of the Palestinian people in Paris.

* China’s top diplomat and foreign minister Wang Yi said the Palestinian issue is the core of the Middle East conflict, and that crux of the matter was that “justice” had been denied to the Palestinian people.

* Iran’s foreign minister said the continuation of crimes against Palestinians will receive a response from “the rest of the axis” and Israel will be responsible for the consequences.

INSIGHTS

* An Israeli invasion of Gaza will face an enemy that has built a formidable armoury and dug a vast tunnel network to evade attackers.

* A factbox on the Gaza Strip, devastated by conflict and economic blockade.

* The war falls under a complex international system of justice that has emerged since World War Two.

* The conflict hinges on statehood, land, Jerusalem and refugees, pitting Israeli demands for security against Palestinian aspirations for a state of their own.

* “He is elusive. He is the man in the shadows.” The secretive Hamas mastermind behind the assault: Mohammed Deif. * The Israel-Hamas war upends Biden’s two-pronged Mideast strategy: brokering Israeli-Saudi detente and containing Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

MARKETS AND BUSINESS

* Bank of Japan Governor Kazuo Ueda said the conflict added to already high uncertainty over the global economic outlook, which has made it difficult for the central bank to navigate monetary policy.

* Israel’s parliamentary finance committee approved a plan to provide a state guarantee of $6 billion to cover insurance against war risks to Israeli airlines.

* Airlines wrestled with the safety risk of evacuation operations.

* What are global firms with a presence in Israel doing after the Hamas attack?

* Israel has raised $200 million in diaspora bonds since the war with Hamas began, Israel Bonds said.

* International Monetary Fund managing director Kristalina Georgieva said the “heartbreaking” Israel-Hamas conflict threatened to darken an already murky global economic outlook.



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