Israel-Palestine live: Thousands in state of panic as Israel continues to strike hospitals
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Thursday night and early Friday morning was a terrifying time for Palestinians in northern Gaza, as Israeli air strikes hit hospitals including al-Shifa, the largest medical complex in the besieged enclave and where thousands of Palestinians have been seeking refuge from Israel's assault.
One of the strikes hit al-Shifa struck near the encampment where journalists were staying. The director of the hospital said there were casualties, but an exact number is not clear yet.
In case you're just tuning in to our coverage, here is what you may have missed over the past several hours:
• The Palestinian death toll currently stands at 10,812 people including 4,412 children, according to the health ministry.
• Biden is being warned by US diplomats abroad that anger is growing amongst Arab countries over American support for Israel's assault on Gaza, several diplomatic cables have revealed.
• Demonstrations and opposition to Biden's stance on the war are growing inside the US as well. More than 500 people who worked on Biden's presidential campaign have signed on to a call for a ceasefire. A major American labour union has done so, too. And demonstrations all across major US cities continue.
• Thursday served as a worldwide day of action by activists, in which they called on demonstrators to hold as many rallies and protests as possible. Organisers listed nearly 100 actions that took place on Thursday alone.
• While the US has maintained stalwart support of Israel amid its campaign in Gaza, Washington's office for Palestinian affairs issued criticism of Israel for demolishing the home of the Palestinian family of a young boy who was arrested for stabbing an Israeli border guard.
• Meanwhile, Iran's foreign minister has warned that the expansion of the scope of the war in Gaza is inevitable.
Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani is on his way to Cairo on Friday morning, where discussions will likely be held on the release of Israeli captives held by Hamas.
The trip comes after the heads of Mossad and the CIA met with the Qatari prime minister in Doha on Thursday to discuss a deal to release captives held in Gaza, as well as discuss a pause in the war.
Around 240 captives were taken to Gaza during Hamas' surprise attack on southern Israel on 7 October, which killed 1,400 Israelis.
The Israeli military has announced the death of another soldier who was killed in fighting in Gaza on Thursday.
The military said on Friday that Gilad Rozenblit, 21, was a frontline medic and was killed in northern Gaza. This raises Israel's official tally of soldiers killed since it launched a ground operation in Gaza to at least 36.
The US Office of Palestinian Affairs has publicly declared its opposition to Israel's move to demolish the home belonging to the family of a 13-year-old Palestinian boy.
“The government of Israel has demolished the home of a Palestinian family in response to the actions of their 13-year-old child,” the US Office of Palestinian Affairs said on X, formerly known as Twitter.
"An entire family should not lose their home because of the actions of one individual."
Israeli forces on Wednesday went into the Shuafat refugee camp in East Jerusalem and demolished the home of Muhammad Zalbani, a young Palestinian who was arrested earlier this year on charges of stabbing an Israeli border officer.
Rights groups have deemed that Israel's use of home demolitions targeting the family or relatives of Palestinians charged with harming Israeli citizens is a form of collective punishment.
The Biden administration has received warnings in private from US diplomats in the Arab world that its support for Israel's military campaign in Gaza "is losing us Arab publics for a generation".
The warning was revealed in diplomatic cables obtained by CNN.
“We are losing badly on the messaging battlespace,” a cable from the US Embassy in Oman said.
The cable added that US support for Israel’s actions is being seen "as material and moral culpability in what they consider to be possible war crimes".
Another cable obtained by CNN from the US embassy in Cairo sent Washington the commentary in a state-run Egyptian newspaper, which stated that “President Biden’s cruelty and disregard for Palestinians exceeded all previous US presidents.”
Israeli forces launched a series of raids on cities throughout the occupied West Bank in the early hours of Thursday, according to Al Jazeera and several Palestinian news outlets.
The raids have targeted areas in East Jerusalem, Hebron, Nablus, and Bethlehem.
Hundreds of pro-Palestinian demonstrators on Thursday occupied the lobby of The New York Times office, where they accused the news outlet of having a bias toward Israel in its coverage of the war in Gaza.
The demonstrators gathered outside The New York Times' headquarters in Manhattan, engaged in a sit-in and vigil that lasted more than an hour.
The sit-in followed a series of actions at high-profile locations across major US cities, including the Statue of Liberty and Grand Central Terminal in New York and the White House, Congress, and State Department in Washington.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (Cair) has said it received 1,283 reports of anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bias since 7 October, a 216 percent increase over the past year.
The range of complainants was broad, encompassing diverse segments of Americans, such as students from public schools and universities, medical professionals, various employees, demonstrators, and mosques.
"Both Islamophobia and anti-Arab racism are out of control in ways we have not seen in almost 10 years," Cair Research and Advocacy Director Corey Saylor said.
Read the full story here.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Ocha) released a report on Thursday on the latest situation in Gaza.
Ocha said that 50,000 Palestinians left northern Gaza on Thursday "through a 'corridor' opened by the Israeli military".
Martin Griffiths, the UN's emergency relief coordinator said that "the UN cannot be part of a unilateral proposal to push hundreds of thousands of desperate civilians in Gaza into so-called safe zones".
Fouad Mazen Mudookh, who lives with his wife and three children in the Sabra neighbourhood of Gaza City, decided to move to his father's house in the same neighbourhood during the second week of the war.
His own home was completely damaged during Israel's bombardment. While Israel gave a 24 hour period for people in northern Gaza to "evacuate", that time was marked by relentless Israeli bombing.
"I saw hell in front of me. Non-stop air strikes," Mudookh says as he recalls the nights spent in his house.
"I never expected the war to last until now. I did not expect it to be this intense or this fierce. It has been 33 days so far. Can you imagine it has been 33 days of genocide?"
Read the full story by clicking below.
A group of protesters began a demonstration at all the entrances to the US State Department building in Washington on Thursday evening, where they demanded a ceasefire and an end to Israel's occupation of the Palestinian territories.
"They sent the staffers to a different side so they do not see us outside calling them out for their complicity in genocide. So we have blocked up every single exit and we will continue to show up," said an organiser of the protest, which was put together by the Palestinian Youth Movement.
Protesters booed individuals as they left the State Department, however, one group of people ended up joining the demonstration.
One college student, who asked to remain anonymous, said she was attending a Diwali celebration at the State Department, and left to attend the rally. She was wearing a Palestinian keffiyeh while she was inside the building, and said that she could hear the chants going on inside.
"I have been involved with a lot of the actions around Palestine happening now, I care deeply about the issue," the student said.
"I wore my keffiyeh, with my sari which was a gift from my grandmother's older sister who was a refugee during the time of partition in South Asia. Wearing the keffiyeh with this sari had great significance for me since it symbolises the interconnected struggle between the people of South Asia and the people in Gaza right now."
More than 500 people who previously worked on US President Joe Biden's 2020 presidential campaign have signed a letter urging for a ceasefire in the war in Gaza.
The signatories of the letter, reported by Vox, include staffers from Biden's 2020 campaign headquarters, the Democratic National Committee, and former staff across 21 states.
"As President of the United States, you have significant influence in this perilous moment," the group said.
"[Y]ou must call for a ceasefire, hostage exchange, and de-escalation, and take concrete steps to address the conditions of occupation, apartheid, and ethnic cleansing at the root of the horrific violence we are witnessing now."
An Israeli air strike has hit al-Shifa Hospital, the largest medical complex in Gaza.
The strike hit a car in the yard of the hospital's complex, a health ministry spokesperson told Al Jazeera Arabic. The spokesperson added that the strike has caused a number of casualties, but the number is not clear at the moment.
Videos shared online showed a man with part of his leg torn off in the yard of the hospital.