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Israel-Palestine Escalation Day 2: Death Toll Rises, Lebanon’s Hezbollah Fires Mortar

October 8, 2023

Death tolls continue to rise on the second day of the Israeli-Palestinian escalation, with 313 Palestinians confirmed dead and over 350 Israelis dead, according to separate updates from the Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and newspaper The Times of Israel.

An additional 1,800 Palestinians and 1,864 Israelis were injured since the outbreak of the conflict.

Local Israeli media are also reporting that approximately 750 Israelis remain missing, according to a report by Al-Mayadeen.

The second day of the conflict also witnessed a mortar attack from Lebanon by Hezbollah on the disputed Shebaa Farms land bordering Lebanon and Syria – currently controlled by Israel.

Israel retaliated shortly after, firing barrages of artillery into southern Lebanon.

“The IDF has taken preparational measures for this type of possibility. We will continue to operate in all regions and at any time necessary to ensure the safety of the Israeli civilians,” tweeted the Israel Defense Forces on 8 October after their airstrikes on Hezbollah bases.

Yesterday, on 7 October, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared that Israel is officially “at war”.

“I have ordered an extensive mobilization of reserves and that we return fire of a magnitude that the enemy has not known,” Netanyahu declared in a statement on 7 October. “The enemy will pay an unprecedented price.”

The IDF’s counter-attack resulted in an operation to demolish the Hamas-controlled Sderot police station to draw out or kill militants holed up inside it.

Netanyahu also met with Knesset opposition leader Yair Lapid and National Unity party leader Benny Gantz on 7 October to discuss forming an emergency coalition government during this time.

Israel’s retaliation in Gaza continued overnight with an onslaught of airstrikes, most notably an airstrike that leveled a residential building. The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs released a statement shortly after, calling the targeted airstrikes a “war crime.”

Israel also announced that all electrical lines and water supplies were cut from already-trapped Gazan citizens.

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