Israel-Gaza war live: Israel says military has intensified operations in Jabaliya refugee camp | Israel-Gaza war

Israel Gaza war live Israel says military has intensified operations in Jabaliya refugee camp | Israel Gaza war
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Israel says it has intensified operations in Jabaliya refugee camp

Israel’s military has confirmed that it has pulled some troops out of the Zeitoun area in northern Gaza, but says that it continues to operate there, and has intensified its operations in Jabaliya refugee camp as well as carrying out what it described as “targeted operations in specific areas of eastern Rafah”.

In a message on its official Telegram channel, the IDF claimed that overnight it began “an operation against terrorist operatives and infrastructure in the center of the Jabaliya camp” and has “eliminated a large number of terrorists.”

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It claims to have destroyed a “terrorist cell that fired toward the city of Sderot”. Israel claims to have intercepted another rocket fired out of Gaza this morning.

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In Rafah, in the south of the Gaza Strip, Israel’s military claims to have targeted “a Hamas training compound in the area, eliminating terrorists in close-quarters combat, and locating large amounts of weapons and equipment”. Earlier Israel released the name of a soldier that was killed during the operation in Rafah, bringing Israel’s total death toll from its ground offensive inside Gaza to 273.

The Nahal Brigade has pulled out from Zeitoun, it said, but the 2nd Brigade combat team remains there.

Reporting from Deir el-Balah in central Gaza, Tareq Abu Azzoum has told Al Jazeera that “Israeli fighter jets are continuing to hammer Jabalia and the Rafah district. In the Jabalia refugee camp, there are ongoing confrontations on the streets.”

He added that “Ten Palestinians have been killed in the city’s Sabra neighbourhood after a UN-run clinic was targeted by Israeli jets. Five Palestinians were also killed in overnight strikes in Bureij refugee camp.”

None of the claims have been independently verified, and media access to the Gaza Strip has been extremely limited while Israel continues its military operation. The Committee to Protect Journalists has recorded that at least 105 journalists and media workers have been killed since the war began.

Key events

Israel’s defense minister Yoav Gallant is to hold a press conference at 6pm local time today (4pm BST). He is expected to take questions.

Geneva Abdul

A London surgeon who provided testimony on Israel’s war in Gaza after operating during the conflict has successfully overturned a Schengen-area travel ban issued by the German authorities last month.

The successful legal challenge comes after Prof Ghassan Abu-Sitta, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon was denied entry to France and Germany in recent weeks, where he was due to speak about his 43 days in Gaza in October and November, which he has described witnessing a “massacre unfold” and the use of white phosphorus munitions, which Israel has denied.

Last week, Human Rights Watch called on the German government to explain the legality of the visa ban that became known after Abu-Sitta was denied entry to France where he was due to speak about the war to the French parliament’s upper house. In April, after Abu-Sitta was refused entry to Berlin to participate in the Palestine Congress forum, where he was denied entry by authorities because they “could not ensure the safety of attendees in the conference”, he said. Without his knowledge, German authorities placed an administrative visa ban on him for a year, meaning he was banned from entering any Schengen country.

Abu-Sitta told the Guardian at the time that he felt criminalised as he was put in a holding cell in Paris, stripped of his possessions and taken by armed guards to his deportation flight. “The only reason the Germans would want a European-wide ban is to stop me from getting to The Hague,” said Abu-Sitta.

Most recently, he was prevented from entering the Netherlands, where he was due to speak on 17 May to civil society organisations, Dutch MPs and the University of Amsterdam. Since returning from Gaza, Abu-Sitta has provided evidence to Scotland Yard and the international criminal court (ICC) in The Hague.

His lawyer, Alexander Gorski, said the decision is “significant turning point” challenging the “hostile environment” that Palestinian human rights advocates have faced in recent months.

“It is remarkable that it even got this far. Prof Ghassan worked tirelessly to help Palestinians in Gaza, in dreadful conditions, and yet he has faced such unfair treatment on his return,” said Gorski.

“This decision means that Ghassan’s freedom of expression and freedom of movement are no longer under threat, and he can speak out about what he witnessed in Gaza. This victory cannot be overstated.”

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has said it faces “significant disruptions” to its humanitarian operations due to Israel’s recent ground operations in Rafah.

In a statement, the organisation said “the closure of the Rafah crossing and a blockade on entry of humanitarian workers and aid, including fuel, [is] critically hindering our ability to deliver essential services and aid to those in desperate need.”

Kiryn Lanning, IRC team lead there, said “I have recently returned from Gaza. Following Israel’s evacuation orders since 6 May, over 400,000 Palestinians have been displaced from Rafah and relocated to Khan Younis and Deir al-Balah, drastically overburdening the already stretched shelter facilities. What we are witnessing in Rafah is nothing less than a humanitarian catastrophe.

“The Kuwaiti hospital in Rafah, the last functioning hospital in the area, has received an evacuation order. With no remaining health facilities to serve the trapped population of at least a million in Rafah, and other facilities underequipped and understaffed, the health care crisis is rapidly intensifying.”

Neha Gohil

Neha Gohil is community affairs correspondent at the Guardian

Fifty members of parliament in the UK have written an open letter to the home secretary demanding the creation of a Gaza Family Scheme to allow people trapped in Gaza to be reunited with their families in the UK.

The open letter, sponsored by Rachael Maskell MP, calls for the Home Office to introduce a scheme similar to the ones introduced to help those fleeing persecution in Ukraine and Hong Kong.

Maskell said: “It is crucial that Government acknowledges its duty to provide a visa route for families who have been caught up in this conflict. All families want, at this dangerous time, is to be together. There are simple solutions that can easily be found, government must heed our call and work with us to end the separation of family members.”

A spokesperson from the Gaza Families Reunited campaign added: “The situation in Gaza continues to rapidly deteriorate. As Israel escalates its bombardment and incursions in the Gaza Strip, including Rafah, the need for a Gaza Family Scheme could not be more urgent. There is currently no viable way for Palestinians in Gaza with family in Britain to reunite. At least two Palestinians have already died while waiting for the Home Office to decide their applications. The home secretary has the power to change this. He must listen to the voices of all of those urging him to act.”

The Guardian previously reported on the hundreds of GoFundMe campaigns set up after the Home Office refused visas or the introduction of a Ukrainian-style entry scheme.

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Emanuel Fabian, military correspondent for the Times of Israel, has posted to social media some images showing damage in the Israeli city of Sderot after a rocket “struck an unoccupied building”.

One of the rockets launched from the Gaza Strip at Sderot a short while ago struck an unoccupied building, the municipality says.

The IDF says the Iron Dome downed two rockets fired at the city.

Damage is caused in the strike, but there are no injuries. pic.twitter.com/BTZ0Uuo7Le

— Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian (@manniefabian) May 15, 2024

Sderot, which was targeted by Hamas during the 7 October attack, is close to the border with Gaza.

Israel says it has intensified operations in Jabaliya refugee camp

Israel’s military has confirmed that it has pulled some troops out of the Zeitoun area in northern Gaza, but says that it continues to operate there, and has intensified its operations in Jabaliya refugee camp as well as carrying out what it described as “targeted operations in specific areas of eastern Rafah”.

In a message on its official Telegram channel, the IDF claimed that overnight it began “an operation against terrorist operatives and infrastructure in the center of the Jabaliya camp” and has “eliminated a large number of terrorists.”

It claims to have destroyed a “terrorist cell that fired toward the city of Sderot”. Israel claims to have intercepted another rocket fired out of Gaza this morning.

In Rafah, in the south of the Gaza Strip, Israel’s military claims to have targeted “a Hamas training compound in the area, eliminating terrorists in close-quarters combat, and locating large amounts of weapons and equipment”. Earlier Israel released the name of a soldier that was killed during the operation in Rafah, bringing Israel’s total death toll from its ground offensive inside Gaza to 273.

The Nahal Brigade has pulled out from Zeitoun, it said, but the 2nd Brigade combat team remains there.

Reporting from Deir el-Balah in central Gaza, Tareq Abu Azzoum has told Al Jazeera that “Israeli fighter jets are continuing to hammer Jabalia and the Rafah district. In the Jabalia refugee camp, there are ongoing confrontations on the streets.”

He added that “Ten Palestinians have been killed in the city’s Sabra neighbourhood after a UN-run clinic was targeted by Israeli jets. Five Palestinians were also killed in overnight strikes in Bureij refugee camp.”

None of the claims have been independently verified, and media access to the Gaza Strip has been extremely limited while Israel continues its military operation. The Committee to Protect Journalists has recorded that at least 105 journalists and media workers have been killed since the war began.

On its official Telegram channel, Israel’s military has claimed that it “successfully intercepted a projectile fired from the area of Jabaliya”, which is in the north of the Gaza Strip. No casualties were reported. The claims have not been independently verified.

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The Times of Israel is reporting that about 200 protesters, including some relatives of those being held hostage by Hamas inside Gaza, are staging a demonstration calling for the return of hostages which has blocked a highway near Ramat Hasharon in Israel.

תלמידי בית ספר “הכפר הירוק”, בני משפחותיהם ונציגים משפחות חטופים חוסמים כעת הכביש הראשי והכניסה למוסד הלימודי על דרך 482. בין המפגינים בני משפחת יבלונקה וגת ממשפחות החטופים. (קרדיט גיל בארי) @N12News pic.twitter.com/bTYBscuXlT

— אור רביד | Or Ravid (@OrRavid) May 15, 2024

Al Jazeera is reporting that at least ten Palestinains have been killed in an Israeli strike on an Unrwa clinic in Gaza City’s Sabra neighbourhood.

More details soon …

Israel has said that one of its soldiers was killed in the south of Gaza on Tuesday. The military now says that 273 soldiers have been killed since ground operations began inside Gaza on 27 October.

It has not been possible for journalists to independently verify the casualty figures being issued during the conflict.

Overnight Israel’s military has claimed to have killed a senior Hezbollah commander inside Lebanon.

Posting a video of a strike to its official Telegram channel, the Israel Defense Forces claimed to have killed Hussain Ibrahim Mekky, describing him as “a senior field commander in the Hezbollah terrorist organization on the southern front, who was responsible for the planning and execution of numerous terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians and territory since the start of the war.”

Al Jazeera reports that pro-Iranian channel Al Mayadeen has confirmed the death.

Welcome and summary

Hello and welcome to the Guardian’s continuing coverage of the Israel-Gaza war.

The US state department has moved a $1bn package of weapons aid for Israel into the congressional review process, two US officials said on Tuesday. The latest weapons package includes tank rounds, mortars and armored tactical vehicles, according to multiple sources in US media.

The chairmen and ranking members of the Senate Foreign Relations and the House Foreign Affairs committees review major foreign weapons deals.

The move comes after president Joe Biden said last week he had delayed a shipment of bombs to Israel over concerns they might be used for a major invasion of Rafah.

More on that in a moment, first here’s a summary of the day’s other main events.

  • Israeli tanks have advanced further into eastern Rafah, reaching some residential districts of the southern border city in Gaza. A UN official said the most advanced Israeli positions were about 2km from his office. Between 360,000 and 500,000 Palestinians have fled Rafah in the past week after Israeli warnings to evacuate eastern and central neighbourhoods.

  • The international court of justice (ICJ), said it would hold hearings on Thursday and Friday to discuss a request by South Africa seeking new emergency measures over the Rafah incursion, which Qatar says has stalled efforts to reach a ceasefire. South Africa’s demand is part of a case it brought against Israel accusing it of violating the genocide convention in Gaza, and which Israel has called baseless.

  • Médecins Sans Frontières said that it had been “forced to stop providing healthcare at Rafah Indonesian Field hospital” as of Sunday. “MSF has seen a pattern of systematic attacks against medical facilities and civilian infrastructure since the beginning of the war. In light of this, as well as the advancing offensive, we have made the decision to leave Rafah Indonesian Field hospital,” the medical NGO said. It said the 22 patients who remained at the hospital have been referred to other facilities as MSF can “no longer guarantee their safety”.

  • The Biden administration has assessed that Israel has amassed enough troops on the edge of Rafah to move forward with a full-scale incursion on the southern Gazan city over the coming days, CNN reported. The two senior administration officials also told the outlet that US officials are unsure if Israel has made a final decision to carry out the full-scale invasion.

  • A pier built by the US military for Gaza aid deliveries will be operational “in the coming days,” the Pentagon said, after a week of bad weather delayed its installation. With a cost of at least $320m, the pier is aimed at boosting humanitarian access to Gaza, which has been ravaged by seven months of war between Israel and Hamas.





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