Here’s what you need to know about the war between Israel and Hamas to start your day
Heavy fighting is taking place in parts of Gaza, including the southern city of Khan Yunis, while several areas have calmed down following the withdrawal of some Israeli units, according to Israeli military and Strip sources.
The death toll in Gaza since October 7 has exceeded 22,300, according to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry.
Meanwhile, fears about the possibility of a wider regional conflict grew after Iranian officials blamed Israel for the deadly twin blasts in Iran and threatened revenge.
The explosion near the grave of military commander Qassem Soleimani, who was killed in a US bombing, came on the fourth anniversary of his death, threatening to escalate tensions in the region that have been rising since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.
Here’s what you need to know:
Hezbollah warning: The leader of Hezbollah, the powerful Iran-backed Islamist militant group based in Lebanon, warned that if Israel went to war with Lebanon, the response would be “unlimited.” Hassan Nasrallah also said that the killing of a senior Hamas leader in Beirut on Tuesday “will not go unpunished.” The strike that killed Hamas official Saleh al-Arouri was carried out by Israel, a US official told CNN. Israel has not claimed responsibility for the attack.
Cross border fire: Israel Defense Forces said they responded to attacks from inside Lebanon on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Lebanon’s foreign minister told CNN the government is working to persuade Hezbollah not to wage war against Israel.
On the ground: An unspecified number of people were killed on Wednesday after artillery strikes near a hospital in southern Gaza, according to the Palestinian Red Crescent Society, which runs the facility. In northern Gaza, video from the Jabalya refugee camp showed the aftermath of a massive explosion that left several civilian casualties. The Hamas-controlled Gaza Health Ministry said “dozens” of people were “killed and injured” in an attack on a family home in Jabalya. CNN has contacted the IDF for comment.
Repaired Pipe: Water has been restored to parts of central Gaza, the Deir al-Balah municipality said, after a major pipeline was out of service for several days, causing “sewage to flow into the streets.” UN agencies and NGOs have warned that the lack of clean water in many areas of Gaza risks spreading skin diseases and other diseases such as diarrhoea.
Hearing in The Hague: The International Court of Justice said it will hold a public hearing next week on South Africa’s genocide charges against Israel in its war against Hamas. An Israeli government spokesman said Tuesday that Israel would appear before the ICJ “to address South Africa’s absurd blood libel.”
Tunnel Video: Israel’s military has released a video it says is working to destroy a tunnel passage, accusing Hamas of digging beneath al-Shifa hospital, Gaza’s largest medical complex. Israel has accused Hamas of developing a tunnel system beneath the hospital to carry out “terrorist operations”, which Hamas has repeatedly denied.