Israel-Gaza live: Egypt mediates ceasefire to end Israel's assault on Gaza
The spokesperson of the Palestine Authority President Mahmoud Abbas held Israel and the United States responsible for the escalation in the Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank.
Nabil Abu Rudeineh said Israel "crossed all red lines" by continuing to kill people in Palestinian cities and bombing Gaza, the official Palestinian news agency Wafa reported on Saturday.
He held the "Israeli occupation government responsible for these serious crimes committed", according to Wafa, warning that they will have "great repercussions on the stability of the entire region".
He also condemned the US administration for its "silence towards the Israeli crimes and failure to immediately intervene to stop them".
A Palestinian family in northern Gaza were shocked this morning when they woke up to a call from an Israeli intelligence officer telling them their home was about to be levelled.
Ammar Banat, who lived in the targeted residential building in Beit Lahia, received the call around 9am local time.
"The officer said: 'Evacuate your home and ask your neighbours to leave as well, we are about to bomb the building,'" Banat told Middle East Eye.
"We then told him that we haven't done anything," the 47-year-old added. "But he said I don't care, evacuate the area."
Banat then rushed to warn his two brothers and their families, who lived next door, and other neighbours.
Minutes later, Israeli fighter jets bombed the building, destroying it completely and making at least 25 people homeless, mostly children.
"We didn't have time to take anything out," Banat, a father of three, said. "My priority was to ensure my children and neighbours evacuate in time."
Since the start of the assault in Gaza on Tuesday, the Israeli military destroyed at least 28 residential units, displacing dozens of families. More than 500 other residential units were partially damaged.
Israeli forces killed two Palestinians in a military raid in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus on Saturday amid ongoing air strikes in Gaza.
The pair were identified by the Palestinian health ministry as Sa'ed Masha, 32, and Adnan al-Araj, 19.
Local media said dozens of Israeli troops surrounded a house in the Balata refugee camp to make an arrest.
Palestinian fighters in the camp engaged the forces in heavy exchanges of fire.
Masha and al-Araj were killed by Israeli gunshots to the head, the Palestinian health ministry said.
The operation did not succeed in arresting or killing the people wanted inside the besieged house, according to Israeli and Palestinian media.
The secretary-general of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Hussein al-Sheikh, urged the international community to pressure to stop its bombing campaign in Gaza.
"In the midst of this continuous aggression against our people in the Gaza Strip and the rest of the country, we call on the USA, the international community and our Arab brothers to put pressure on the occupation authorities to immediately stop the aggression against the Palestinian people," Sheikh said in a tweet on Saturday.
"We call on international and humanitarian institutions to intervene quickly to open the crossings with the Gaza Strip and transfer the injured for treatment."
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The fifth day of the Israeli assault in Gaza started almost the same way it has since the fighting began on Tuesday.
After a brief calm on Friday night amid reports of indirect truce talks, the fire exchanges resumed overnight.
This time, Egypt reportedly proposed a temporary humanitarian ceasefire starting from midnight local time.
But Cairo failed to make a breakthrough in the talks once again, and Israeli fighter jets continued bombing Gaza shortly after 12am.
Explosions were heard across the Palestinian enclave, as incoming rocket sirens were sounded in Israeli towns near Gaza.
Meanwhile, Israeli troops raided the occupied West Bank city of Nablus on Saturday morning, killing two Palestinians after armed clashes erupted with local resistance fighters in the Balata refugee camp.
At least 143 Palestinians have died from Israeli fire this year, including 33 killed in Gaza since Tuesday. At least 150 were wounded in the besieged enclave in the last five days.
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The fifth day of Israel’s latest assault on Gaza has entered with uncertainty hanging over a temporary ceasefire agreement, and Palestinians in the besieged Strip remain in a state of fear as Israeli air strikes escalated on Friday.
The offensive, dubbed "Operation Shield and Arrow" by Israel, has so far killed six senior members of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the second-largest armed group in Gaza after Hamas. The latest death, Iyad al-Hassani, was confirmed by Islamic Jihad on Friday. In total, the air strikes have killed 33 Palestinians.
Meanwhile, the Palestinian group responded on Friday with more rocket fire aimed at Israel and its settlements in the occupied West Bank.
Dawud Shihab, spokesperson for Islamic Jihad, told Middle East Eye the rockets launched earlier on Friday at settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem were to send a message to Israel.
“The launching of rockets close to Jerusalem is a message that resistance groups are watching what is happening, particularly ahead of the Flag March which will take place soon,” he told MEE.
Shihab said Palestinian groups don't have "huge demands" for a ceasefire.
"All we ask for is that Israel complies and ceases the killing and targeting of people,” he said.
In Israel, the one Israeli that was killed was identified as Inga Avramyan, a woman in her 80s. The organisers of the demonstrations against Israel's judicial overhaul have also cancelled a protest on Saturday for the first time since they began 19 weeks ago.
Several reports late on Friday said that Egypt had proposed a temporary ceasefire in order to open the Karem Abu Salem and Beit Hanoun crossings and allow the entry of medical equipment.
However, neither side by the time of publishing had agreed to the deal. A spokesperson with Islamic Jihad told Al-Arabi TV that the armed group has not agreed to any proposals as of yet.
And even still amid these reports, the Joint Command, an umbrella body of armed groups in the Strip, including Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, released a short statement saying their "fight" is still on.
In addition to the more than two dozen deaths, the air strikes in Gaza have led to major damage to civilian infrastructure and left many homeless.
A hospital in central Gaza had been damaged as a result of a strike on a house next to it. And the Gaza Electricity Authority warned the area could face critical power outages within 72 hours due to a lack of diesel fuel for the sole power plant in the enclave.
Israel has completely closed the crossings connecting it to Gaza since Tuesday, halting the entry of essential goods into the coastal enclave.
Israel's assassinations of Palestinian military leaders along with their families in Gaza amounts to a war crime, according to a legal expert.
Speaking with Middle East Eye's correspondent in Gaza Ahmed al-Samak, Salah Abdel Ati said such targeted killings violate international law and the Geneva Conventions.
"Targeting resistance members in their homes, while they aren’t being used for military purposes, is a war crime," Abdel Ati, chairman of the International Commission to Support Palestinian Rights, said.
He added that the killing of civilians, including children and women, also violates of international human rights law.
"International law and the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention provide civilians, especially children, special protection. Targeting them is a full-fledged war crime," he told MEE.
"Israel ignores International Humanitarian Law and human rights principles, and deliberately targets civilians and civilian objects to pressure the Palestinian resistance."
Israel killed 33 Palestinians in the offensive so far, including six children and seven women.
Amid reports that a ceasefire proposed by Egypt is being considered by Israel and the Palestinian factions in Gaza, the Joint Command, an umbrella body of armed groups in the strip, including Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, released a short statement saying their "fight" is still on.
"The Joint Command reaffirms that our fight is ongoing and we will continue to honour our martyrs no matter the price," the body said in a communique through its Telegram channel.
Egypt, which failed to broker a ceasefire earlier this week, has introduced a new proposal for a temporary ceasefire, according to several reports citing Palestinian sources.
Anadolu reported that the truce would be "temporary", and Al-Arabi TV reported that the proposal would be for a humanitarian ceasefire in order to open Karem Abu Salem and Beit Hanoun crossing and allow the entry of medical equipment.
A spokesperson with Islamic Jihad told Al-Arabi TV that the armed group has not agreed to any proposals as of yet.
A hospital in central Gaza has been damaged due to an Israeli air strike, the Palestinian Health Ministry has reported.
The ministry reported that departments within the hospital were destroyed as a result of the strike, which targeted a house next to it.
Attacks on medical facilities are prohibited under international humanitarian law as well as the Geneva Conventions.
The Israeli individual killed by rocket fire in the central Israeli city of Rehovot on Thursday has been identified as Inga Avramyan, a woman in her 80s.
The strike wounded eight more people, including her husband.
Iyad al-Hassani, a senior member of the Gaza-based Palestinian Islamic Jihad, was killed in an Israeli air strike on Friday, the armed group has confirmed.
Hassani's death brings the total number of senior Islamic Jihad leaders killed in Israel's latest offensive to six.
"Saraya al-Quds mourns its great commander martyr, Iyad al-Abd al-Husseini, known as Abu Anas, a member of the military council and the operations unit leader in Saraya al-Quds, who was killed in a cowardly Zionist assassination operation this evening in Gaza," the group said in a communique.
The organisers behind the weekly protests against Israel's judicial overhaul plans say that Saturday's demonstrations have been cancelled as Israel's offensive on Gaza continues to escalate, with armed groups in the besieged Strip responding with rocket fire.
It is the first cancellation of the demonstrations since they began nearly 20 weeks ago.
"Our foremost concern is the safety of our people who are defending democracy," the organisers said, as quoted by The Times of Israel.
"Out of responsibility for the safety [of demonstrators], we have decided to put off the demonstration."
For the last three days, Noura Waheidi has kept her three children close.
With Israeli warplanes soaring above the besieged Gaza Strip every night and launching devastating air strikes on densely populated sites it claims are affiliated with Palestinian resistance factions, she, like every other Palestinian, has been on edge.
At least 31 Palestinians have been killed - including five children - since Israel began targeting so-called military sites in the enclave.
As fear grows with each attack, residents have developed habits or practices to reduce physical and psychological harm.
Aware that they or their neighbours could be targeted at any moment, Palestinians usually keep their precious belongings and official documents in one place, so that they can grab them quickly in the event of an evacuation.
Others chose to keep their documents and valuables in other safe places when they feel their neighbourhoods are under threat.
"We put everything in one bag that I call the emergency bag. We keep all our official papers and belongings in it, including our IDs, birth certificates, contracts, gold, and money," Waheidi told Middle East Eye.
"We expect to evacuate our home at any moment, there is no place safe in Gaza."