Here’s what is to know about the situation on Sunday, December 3, 2023:
The Israeli bombardment
- The Israeli army continued to relentlessly bomb different areas across the Gaza Strip, killing hundreds of Palestinians since the truce ended on Friday. At least 15,207 Palestinians have been killed so far, including 6,150 children.
- On Sunday morning alone, more than 30 Palestinians were killed in the southern cities of Khan Younis and Rafah. Israel has conducted more than 600 air raids since Friday. The Israeli army has called on residents from certain neighbourhoods in Khan Younis to evacuate to other areas. The warning came through a new evacuation system that divides Gaza into many small blocks with the stated purpose of avoiding civilian casualties.
- Israel appears to be planning to expand its ground offensive to include southern Gaza as well. This and the brutal aerial raids have left Palestinians wondering where to take shelter.
- Hamas launched the largest barrage of rockets from the Gaza Strip since the ceasefire ended, hitting multiple places within Israeli territory in the south, in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. Most of them were intercepted.
- The Times of Israel reported that an Israeli official had confirmed Israeli intentions to create a buffer zone on the Palestinian side of the Gaza border to prevent future attacks after the war.
- Israel recalled the Mossad delegation it had sent to Qatar to negotiate late on Saturday, saying an “impasse” had been hit in the talks.
- A Hamas official told Al Jazeera negotiations on prisoner exchanges were over and would not resume until Israel halted its attacks and handed over all Palestinian prisoners.
- United States Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin said he learned from his time leading forces against ISIL (ISIS) that “you can only win in urban warfare by protecting civilians”. He added that Washington “will remain Israel’s closest friend in the world”.
- French President Emmanuel Macron, who is in Doha to help negotiate a truce, said, “There is no lasting security for Israel in the region if its security is achieved at the cost of Palestinian lives.”
- Karim Khan, the chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), visited Israel and the occupied West Bank on Saturday. Palestinian rights groups boycotted Khan’s visit and asked why he did not visit refugee camps in Gaza under Israeli bombardment.
Humanitarian aid and West Bank
- Humanitarian aid in Gaza has “largely halted” after Israeli attacks resumed on Friday, according to the United Nations. It also said there were only limited distributions of flour in areas south of Wadi Gaza in the past few days.
- Sharing data from the Gaza Electricity Distribution Company, the UN has also said the besieged enclave has had no electricity since October 11. Palestinians also continue to struggle to get water.
- Israeli raids have not stopped across the West Bank either. A 21-year-old Palestinian man was shot dead on Sunday morning in Qalqilya in the occupied territories, where more than 250 people have been killed since October 7.
Source: Al Jazeera