Nearly 300 Palestinians have been murdered in fierce fighting in Gaza over the last 24 hours as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Palestinian militant group Hamas have traded threats.
Africa Today News, New York reports that Israeli raids continued across the besieged territory yesterday, including in northern Gaza where entire neighbourhoods have been flattened by air strikes and where ground troops that have been operating for more than six weeks continue to face heavy resistance from Hamas fighters.
Gaza’s health ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra told newsmen that 297 people were killed and more than 550 wounded in the past 24 hours in Gaza, bringing the death toll since the start of the war on October 7 to more than 18,000 – the majority of them women and children.
Sunday marked the 65th day that Israeli forces had attacked Gaza. Hamas had threatened to release all of the prisoners it had taken on October 7 if its demands were not met.
‘Neither the fascist enemy and its arrogant leadership… nor its supporters… can take their prisoners alive without an exchange and negotiation and meeting the demands of the resistance,’ Hamas spokesman Abu Obeida said in a televised broadcast.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, on his part, called on Hamas to surrender.
‘It is the beginning of the end of Hamas. I say to the Hamas terrorists: It’s over. Don’t die for [Yahya] Sinwar. Surrender now,’ he said, referring to the Hamas chief in Gaza.
Hamas earlier said Israel launched a series of “very violent raids” targeting the southern city of Khan Younis and the road linking it to Rafah near the border with Egypt.
Gaza residents also reported fierce fighting in Gaza City’s neighbourhood of Shujayea and in the Jabalia refugee camp, a dense urban area.
The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) said Israeli forces raided an area near the UNRWA clinic in the heart of the Jabalia camp where its emergency teams and medics are operating a medical post.
‘The team consists of nine doctors, nurses, and volunteers. The surrounding area is currently under bombardment, posing a constant threat to the lives of medical teams and the wounded,’ the Red Crescent said in a post on X on Sunday evening.
In Shujayea – where Israeli snipers and tanks positioned themselves among the abandoned buildings – residents said the dead and wounded were left in the streets as ambulances could no longer reach the area.