02 Dec 2023, 17:21

Latest developments in Israel-Hamas war

JERUSALEM, Dec 2, 2023 (BSS/AFP) - Israel and Hamas fought on Saturday for a second day since a seven-day truce expired.

Fighting between Israel and Hamas-allied forces in Lebanon also resumed.

Hamas militants from Gaza launched an unprecedented attack on southern Israel on October 7, killing about 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and taking around 240 hostages, according to Israeli officials.

In response, Israel vowed to destroy Hamas and began an air, sea and ground offensive that has killed more than 15,000 people, also mostly civilians, according to Gaza's Hamas government.

During the week-long pause in fighting, Hamas released 80 Israeli hostages in exchange for 240 Palestinian prisoners.

Twenty-five other hostages, mostly Thais, were also freed under separate arrangements.

On day 57 of the war, here are five key developments from the past 24 hours:

- More than 200 dead -

The Hamas government in Gaza said Saturday that 240 people had been killed since the truce between Israel and Hamas expired on Friday at 7:00 am (0500 GMT), when fighting immediately restarted.

Another 650 people had been injured in "hundreds of air strikes, artillery and navy bombardments, everywhere in the Gaza Strip", Hamas said in a statement, adding that Israeli forces had "particularly targeted Khan Yunis", a city in Gaza's south.

- 400 targets in Gaza -

The Israeli military said Saturday it had attacked more than 400 targets in the Gaza Strip since the pause in the fighting with Hamas ended.

Air, naval and ground forces were involved, it said, adding that fighter jets hit "more than 50 targets in an extensive attack in the Khan Yunis area".

The total target figure is roughly in line with the daily average number prior to the pause, according to military figures released previously.

- Aid resumes -

The Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said on Saturday that it had "now received aid trucks through the Rafah crossing", from its Egyptian counterparts.

Late Friday the PRCS had announced that Israel told organisations "that the entry of aid trucks from the Egyptian side to the #Gaza Strip is prohibited, starting from today until further notice."

Officials on both sides of the Rafah crossing had confirmed that no trucks had entered since fighting resumed.

- Five hostages confirmed dead -

The Israeli army on Friday confirmed the deaths of five hostages held in Gaza, and the body of one of them returned to Israel.

"In recent days, the IDF (military) and Israel police notified the families of the hostages Eliyahu Margalit, Maya Goren, Ronen Engel and Arye Zalmanovitz about their deaths," army spokesman Daniel Hagari said.

He also said troops had brought back the body of Ofir Tsarfati, kidnapped from a rave party on October 7.

- Syria strikes -

Israeli air strikes killed two Syrian pro-Hezbollah fighters when they hit sites belonging to the group near Damascus early on Saturday, a war monitor told AFP.

"Two Syrian fighters working for Hezbollah were killed and seven other fighters working for the group were wounded," said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

On Friday, Lebanon's Hezbollah movement said two of its members were killed in Israeli strikes on Lebanon, as its members resumed attacks against Israel after the truce.