Fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas militants was ongoing Monday in seven to eight locations inside Israel around the Gaza Strip, the army said, as Israel intensified its bombardments of Gaza. The death toll surged to more than 1,100 on Monday, the third day of clashes, with at least 700 reportedly killed in Israel and more than 400 in Gaza. Follow our liveblog for all the latest developments. All times are Paris time (GMT+2).
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8:08am: Unfolding situation in Israel an ‘ongoing story this morning’, FRANCE 24’s Irris Makler reports
Israeli media on Monday is reporting a second infiltration, with around 70 Palestinian militants entering the south of Israel, says FRANCE 24’s Irris Makler, reporting from Jerusalem. “It’s an unfolding situation and an ongoing story this morning,” said Makler.
This comes as the Israeli army said fighting was ongoing in “seven to eight” locations around Gaza in Israeli territory.
“Many people this morning don’t known if their loved ones are dead, missing or have been taken hostage in Gaza,” said Makler.
8:04am: Fighting with Hamas ongoing in ‘seven to eight’ locations around Gaza
Fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas militants was ongoing Monday in seven to eight locations inside Israel around the Gaza Strip, the army said.
“We’re still fighting. There are between seven to eight open places around Gaza (where) we have still warriors fighting terrorists,” military spokesman Richard Hecht told reporters, two days after the Palestinian Islamist group launched a surprise attack on Israel.
“We thought by yesterday we would have full control. I hope we will by the end of the day.”
7:09am: Battle with Hamas gunmen taking ‘more time’ than expected, says IDF
Israeli forces are fighting Hamas gunmen at seven to eight points outside Gaza, an Israeli military spokesperson said on Monday, 48 hours after the biggest attack on the country in decades.
“It’s taking more time than we expected to get things back into a defensive, security posture,” Lt. Col. Richard Hecht told a briefing with journalists.
7:01am: Dozen Thai nationals killed in conflict, says Thai foreign ministry
Twelve Thais have been killed in the conflict between Israel and Hamas militants, the kingdom’s government said Monday as it prepared a plan to evacuate its citizens.
Foreign ministry spokeswoman Kanchana Patarachoke said the Thai embassy in Israel learned of the deaths from the victims’ employers.
She said a further eight Thais had been wounded and 11 taken captive since the war erupted when Hamas launched a large-scale attack on Saturday.
There are around 30,000 Thai workers in Israel, according to Bangkok’s labour ministry, many of them working in agriculture.
Thai air force planes were on standby to fly citizens home, though the date and other details of any evacuation were still being worked on, said Kanchana.
6:54am: Israel strikes more than 500 targets overnight in Gaza, says IDF
Israeli air strikes and artillery shelling struck more than 500 targets belonging to the Hamas and Islamic Jihad militant groups in the Gaza Strip overnight, the Israeli military said Monday.
“Overnight IDF (Israeli army) fighter jets, helicopters, aircraft and artillery struck over 500 Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorist targets in the Gaza Strip,” the military said in a statement.
The Israeli strikes hit numerous multi-storey buildings, including the home of Rawhi Mushtaha, a member of the Hamas political bureau, the army said.
The residence contained a “Hamas terror command centre from which he helped to direct the infiltration into Israel”, it said.
Two Hamas “operational assets” were also struck, including one located in a mosque, the army said, adding a target belonging to Islamic Jihad was also hit.
4:53am: Cathay Pacific cancels Tel Aviv flights on Tuesday citing situation in Israel
Cathay Pacific Airways said on Monday that it was cancelling flights CX675 from Hong Kong to Tel Aviv and CX676 from Tel Aviv to Hong Kong on Tuesday.
Cathay said it would provide further updates ahead of its next scheduled service on October 12.
3:50am: Iran’s UN mission says Tehran not involved in Hamas attacks
Iran’s mission to the United Nations said on Sunday that Tehran was not involved in Islamist group Hamas’ killing of some 700 Israelis and abduction of dozens more, one of the bloodiest attacks in Israel‘s history.
“The resolute measures taken by Palestine constitute a wholly legitimate defence against seven decades of oppressive occupation and heinous crimes committed by the illegitimate Zionist regime,” Iran’s UN mission said in statement.
Iran has made no secret of its backing for Hamas, funding and arming the group as well as the Palestinian militant organisation Islamic Jihad.
3:45am: Oil prices jump more than $4 as Middle East violence rattles markets
Oil prices jumped more than $4 a barrel in early Asian trade on Monday, as dramatic military clashes between Israeli and Hamas forces over the weekend deepened political uncertainty across the Middle East.
The surge in oil prices reversed last week’s downward trend – the largest weekly decline since March – in which Brent fell about 11 percent and WTI retreated more than 8 percent amid concerns about high interest rates and their impact on global demand.
“Increasing geopolitical risk in the Middle East should support oil prices … higher volatility can be expected”, analysts from ANZ Bank said in a client note.
The eruption of violence threatens to derail US efforts to broker a rapprochment between Saudi Arabia and Israel, in which the kingdom would normalise ties with Israel in return for a defence deal between Washington and Riyadh.
1:58am: US deploying ships closer to Israel
US President Joe Biden ordered US ships and warplanes to move closer to Israel in a show of support.
The Pentagon said it was sending the aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford and its accompanying warships to the eastern Mediterranean, while boosting fighter aircraft squadrons in the region.
US Central Command confirmed Sunday afternoon that ships and planes had begun moving to their new posts.
1:15am: ‘Several’ US citizens have died following attacks in Israel, NSC says
Several US nationals have died since the start of Hamas’ surprise attack on Israel on Saturday, a National Security Council spokesman said Sunday, adding that US officials remained in touch with their Israeli counterparts.
Official word of Americans killed in the conflict came as Israel retaliated for the incursion, launching attacks on the Palestinian enclave of Gaza.
12:35am: US demands condemnation of Hamas at UN meeting, but Security Council takes no immediate action
The UN Security Council held an emergency meeting behind closed doors Sunday, with the United States demanding all 15 members strongly condemn “these heinous terrorist attacks committed by Hamas”, but they took no immediate action.
US deputy ambassador Robert Wood said afterward that “a good number of countries” did condemn the Hamas attack but not all council members. He told reporters they could probably figure out one of them.
Russia’s UN ambassador, Vassily Nebenzia, told The Associated Press the Americans tried to say during the meeting that Russia isn’t condemning the attacks, but “that’s untrue”.
“It was in my comments,” he said. “We condemn all the attacks on civilians.”
Nebenzia said Russia’s message is: “It’s important to stop the fighting immediately, to go to a cease-fire and to meaningful negotiations, which were stalled for decades.”
Chinese Ambassador Zhang Jun voiced a similar position earlier, as he headed into the meeting. He said Beijing condemns all attacks on civilians, though he did not mention Hamas.
“What’s really important is to prevent the further escalation of the situation and further casualties of civilians,” Zhang said. “What’s also important is really to come back to the two-state solution.”
12:05am: Israeli UN envoy decries ‘war crimes’, UN Security Council meets
Israel‘s ambassador to the United Nations on Sunday accused Palestinian Islamist group Hamas of war crimes, vowing that it was time to “obliterate Hamas terror infrastructure”, as the UN Security Council met to discuss the conflict.
In a dramatic assault launched from the Palestinian enclave of Gaza on Saturday, Hamas militants stormed into Israeli towns, killing more than 600 people and escaping with dozens of hostages, in the deadliest day for Israel since the 1973 war.
“These are war crimes, blatant documented war crimes,” said Israeli UN Ambassador Gilad Erdan ahead of the closed-door meeting of the 15-member Security Council.
“The era of reasoning with these savages is over,” he told reporters. “Now is the time to obliterate Hamas terror infrastructure, to completely erase it, so that such horrors are never committed again.”
10:22pm, October 8: Senior Hamas official says militant group is holding more than 100 people captive after assault on Israel
A senior Hamas official says the militant group is holding more than 100 people captive after its unprecedented assault on Israel.
Mousa Abu Marzouk made the remarks Sunday to the Arabic-language news outlet al-Ghad. The figure is in addition to more than 30 people said to be held by the Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad.
(FRANCE 24 with AFP, AP and REUTERS)
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