Israel has intensified its bombardment of the Gaza Strip in retaliation to Hamas’ surprise cross-border incursion.
Clouds of smoke were seen rising over the Gaza skyline and large parts of the territory were covered in debris.
The Israeli military announced that it will carry out one of the largest airstrikes ever against Hamas in the besieged Gaza Strip.
Israeli media also reported that Israel has hit 1000 targets in Gaza.
The Israeli army radio reported that Israeli airstrikes on Gaza will continue even at the cost of harming Israeli captives in Gaza.
“Attacks on the Gaza Strip will be carried out powerfully and widely, even at the cost of harming Israeli hostages who are in captivity in Gaza.
“If there is accurate intelligence information about the location of the captives. Certainly Israel will refrain from attacking that location, but as long as such information does not exist, all Hamas targets will be attacked.”Israeli army radio
At least 560 Palestinians in Gaza have been killed by Israel since October 7, 2023. About 2,900 people have been injured.
According to Israeli authorities, Israel’s death toll has risen to at least 800, with 2,616 injured.
A spokesperson for the health ministry in Gaza described an increasing number of casualties arriving at all hospitals, which has led to “significant overcrowding” and “congestion in the morgue refrigerators.”
Additionally, the Palestinian health ministry disclosed that the Beit Hanoun hospital is out of service because of “repeated targeting” by Israeli airstrikes.
Beit Hanoun hospital is the only hospital in the city on the north-east of the Gaza Strip.
The Palestinian health ministry added that medical teams were unable to enter or leave the hospital, and that large parts of the hospital have been damaged.
Earlier on Monday, October 9, 2023, Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu stated that his country’s response to the hostilities initiated by Hamas will “change the Middle East.”
Netanyahu was cited by his office as saying; “What Hamas will experience will be difficult and terrible; we are already in the campaign and we are just getting started… The state will leave no stone unturned to help all of you. I ask that you stand steadfast because we are going to change the Middle East.”
Meanwhile, Hamas’ Qassam Brigades threatened to execute Israeli captives if Israel continues to bombard and kill civilians in Gaza.
“Any targeting of innocent civilians without warning will be met regretfully by executing one of the captives in our custody, and we will be forced to broadcast this execution,” Abu Obeida, a spokesman for Hamas’ Qassam Brigades, said.
“We regret this decision but we hold the Zionist enemy and their leadership the responsibility for this,” he said.
Guterres Urges An End To Ongoing Bloodshed
Moreover, United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres called on all warring parties to respect international humanitarian law.
“I am deeply distressed by today’s announcement that Israel will initiate a complete siege of the Gaza Strip – nothing allowed in, no electricity, food or fuel,” Guterres said.
He added, “The humanitarian situation in Gaza was extremely dire before these hostilities. Now it will only deteriorate exponentially.”
The UN chief also pointed out that the latest developments did not happen“in a vacuum.”
“The reality is that it grows out of a long standing conflict with a 56-year-long occupation and no political end in sight. It’s time to end this vicious cycle of bloodshed, hatred and polarisation,” Guterres said.
“I recognise the legitimate grievances of the Palestinian people. But nothing can justify these acts of terror and the killing, maiming and abduction of civilians.”Antonio Guterres
He reiterated his call to immediately cease attacks and release all hostages.
“While I recognise Israel’s legitimate security concerns, I also remind Israel that military operations must be conducted in strict accordance with international humanitarian law.
“Civilians must be respected and protected at all times. Civilian infrastructure must never be a target.”Antonio Guterres