5 journalists among 29 killed across Gaza in 24 hours

5 journalists among 29 killed across Gaza in 24 hours

Israeli forces stepped up military strikes across Gaza in the past 24 hours, killing at least 29 Palestinians, among them five journalists.

The five deceased journalists bring to 158 the number of journalists that the Hamas-Israeli war has claimed since October 7, 2023.

Gaza territory health officials said on Saturday that the separate airstrikes that claimed the 29 lives on Friday through Saturday wounded about a hundred other people.

According to officials, in one particular incident, Israeli forces which deepened their incursions into Rafah, near the border with Egypt, killed four Palestinian policemen and wounded eight others in an air strike on their vehicle on Saturday.

A statement from the Hamas-run interior ministry said the four deceased policemen included the head of the police force in western Rafah neighbourhood of Tel Al-Sultan, Fares Abdel-Al.

The Israeli military on its part said forces continued intelligence-base operations in Rafah, destroyed several underground structures, seized weapons and killed several Palestinian gunmen.

The military explained that its operations in Rafah were aimed at eradicating the last Hamas armed-wing battalions.

DAILY POST reports that although Hamas has given initial approval for a truce deal in Gaza, dropping the demand that Israel commits to a complete end to the war, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said gaps remain between negotiating parties after Israel’s Mossad chief left Doha at the end of Gaza truce talks with mediators.

Armed conflict between Israel and Hamas-led Palestinian militant groups has been on mainly in the Gaza Strip since October 7, 2023.

There have also been clashes in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, and with Hezbollah along the borders with Lebanon and Syria.

Recorded as the fifth war of the Gaza-Israel conflict since 2008, the Hamas-Israel war is regarded as part of the broader Israeli-Palestinian conflict since the 1973 Yom Kippur War.

The Hamas-Israel war reportedly began when Hamas-led militant groups attacked Israel on October 7, when estimated 3,000 militants breached the Gaza-Israel barrier and attacked Israeli civilian communities and military bases, launching several thousand rockets concurrently into Israel.

During the surprise attack, 1,139 Israelis and foreign nationals were allegedly killed by the militants who allegedly also abducted 251 Israelis and foreigners and took them into Gaza.

Hamas said at the time that its attack was in response to the continued Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories, the blockades of the Gaza Strip, and the expansion of illegal Israeli settlements, among other claims.

Israel had responded by launching destructive bombing campaigns and then commencing a huge ground invasion on October 27, the vow of the Israel forces being to destroy Hamas and release all hostages.

The group Hamas, which fully spells out as Harakat al-Muqawama al-Islamiya, is an Islamic resistance movement and a Palestinian Sunni Islamist political and military movement ruling parts of the Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip since 2007.