The Israeli occupation escalated its shelling of the Gaza Strip on Friday night and Saturday, primarily targeting eastern and northern areas. This came concurrently with attempts to launch a ground incursion of the Strip, which was repelled by Palestinian Resistance fighters.
Palestinian media outlets reported on Saturday morning that over 100 people were killed as a result of Israeli airstrikes targeting a multi-story residential building that sheltered displaced persons in the al-Shati refugee camp west of Gaza City.
Al Mayadeen’s correspondent reported renewed heavy shelling in the vicinity of the Indonesian Hospital and around the al-Shifa Medical Complex in Gaza.
The Israeli occupation also targeted a house near the Al-Ahly Club in the al-Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza, resulting in a large number of casualties.
Sources indicated that Israeli occupation forces used internationally prohibited white phosphorus bombs to shell some areas in Gaza City.
Sources told that the latest Israeli escalation came as a ceasefire agreement, including the release of all children and women held by the occupation, was approaching. It was also expected that the Resistance would release foreign non-military captives it held since October 7.
This comes despite the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) unanimously calling for a quick humanitarian truce between “Israel” and the Palestinian Resistance, as well as aid access to the besieged Gaza Strip and civilian safety.
Earlier, Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of the Hamas movement, announced in a statement that its Resistance fighters were repelling an Israeli ground incursion in Beit Hanoun and east of Bureij. Similarly, Al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement, announced that its advanced units were present in combat zones and were confronting the Israeli occupation forces attempting to advance toward the Gaza Strip.
In the same context, a source in the Palestinian Resistance told that Israeli occupation soldiers are in a hit-and-run state and unable to maintain ground gains in incursion points in the north, northeast, and northwest of al-Bureij camp. Consequently, the Israeli army is intensifying its shelling on the frontlines.
According to Israeli media, the “first ground test seems to have been disappointing,” adding that the Israeli government is apparently “betting on the lives of its soldiers on the gambling table.”
This comes after the Israeli occupation army said it expanded the scope of its ground operations to move into Gaza starting Friday, as per Israeli army spokesperson Daniel Hagari.
The President of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) emphasized that “civilians in Gaza are experiencing the most intense shelling ever.”
In turn, Doctors Without Borders (MSF) expressed “deep concern” about the situation in Gaza, stressing that the group lost contact with some of their Palestinian colleagues on the ground amid intense Israeli bombardment and the cut off of all sources of communication.
“We are particularly worried for the patients, medical staff and thousands of families taking shelter at Al Shifa hospital and other health facilities,” MSF wrote on X, adding that “we call for the unequivocal protection of all medical facilities, staff and civilians across the Gaza Strip.”
The Palestine Telecommunications Company stated that communications and internet services in the Gaza Strip were completely cut off late Friday amid heavy Israeli bombing of feeder lines, towers, and networks. Additionally, Ooredoo Palestine, a mobile network operator in the West Bank, also announced it was out of service.
Human Rights Watch (HRW) warned that the telecommunications blackout in Gaza risks providing cover for mass atrocities. “This information blackout risks providing cover for mass atrocities and contributing to impunity for human rights violations,” Deborah Brown, the group’s senior technology and human rights researcher, said in the statement.