Today marks one month since the war on Gaza started on 7 October. Israel has killed over 10,000 Palestinians since then, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. Israel opened Salah al-Din Road for evacuation to the south for three hours today, 7 November.
Update 6: The main Gaza Strip highway, Salah al-Din Road, will be open to Palestinians for three hours starting at 10 am on 7 November, according to an announcement made by the Israeli military.
This is part of Israel’s three-week evacuation plan for the residents of Gaza to move southward, away from focal points of conflict.
Update 5: A top Hamas official, Moussa Abu Marzouk, has denied that his group targeted civilians in Israel, insisting that only conscripts were the targets of their attacks, in an interview with BBC published on Tuesday, 7 November.
Hamas’ attacks were “exempt” from “women, children, and civilians,” Abu Marzouk told the BBC.
In reference to the hostage situation, he retorted that Israel’s bombardment of Gaza prevented the hostages from being released. “We will release them. But we need to stop the fighting,” he said.
Update 4: UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk begins a five-day visit to the Middle East region starting today, to assess the impact of the attacks and the ongoing Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories.
“Human rights violations are at the root of this escalation and human rights play a central role in finding a way out of this vortex of pain,” he said.
The High Commissioner will meet with the Egyptian Foreign Minister, representatives of regional civil society organizations, and the Secretary-General of the League of Arab States. On 8 November, he will travel to Rafah, on the border with Gaza.
Update 3: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has once again rejected the call for a ceasefire in Gaza unless hostages are released, in an interview with ABC on 6 November.
“There’ll be no ceasefire, general ceasefire, in Gaza without the release of our hostages,” Netanyahu said. “As far as tactical little pauses, an hour here, an hour there. We’ve had them before, I suppose, will check the circumstances to enable goods, humanitarian goods to come in, or our hostages, individual hostages to leave. But I don’t think there will be a general ceasefire.”
Update 2: The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) reported that two Israeli rockets hit the area around al-Quds hospital in Gaza on 6 November.
“A short while ago, the IOF aircraft targeted the vicinity of the Al-Quds Hospital with two rockets, approximately 50 meters from the hospital’s gate,” the group said.
Update 1: The death toll in the Gaza Strip has surpassed 10,000 civilians — including more than 4,100 children and 25,000 injured — reported the Palestinian Health Ministry. At least 155 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank. The United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres said that the Strip was becoming “a graveyard for children.”
The Conflict So Far
After a surprise attack conducted on 7 October by Hamas on a number of southern Israeli towns which resulted in the deaths of an estimated 1,405 people and more than 220 being taken hostage by Hamas, Israel launched a retaliatory bombing campaign against what it describes as ‘terrorist targets’ in the Gaza Strip.
Over 10,000 Palestinians have been killed in the Gaza Strip — including at least 3,826 children — and over 24,000 others injured. Meanwhile at least 163 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank and at least 2,200 have been injured.
The priority of the Egyptian government since the beginning of the conflict has been deescalation and the securing of a path for aid to enter the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing. Israel bombed the crossing at least six times, and limited aid trucks have crossed to Gaza so far, which UN officials warn is insufficient amid dire humanitarian conditions.
Most Western countries, with the United States at the forefront, have expressed unconditional support for Israel, despite the steadily rising death toll in Gaza. Meanwhile, the United Nations General Assembly has issued a resolution calling for a ceasefire.