Israel-Hamas war LIVE: Israel says Gaza ground operation is expanding as UN warns of 'growing misery'

The UN human rights office also raised the alarm over "war crimes" being committed as the Israel-Hamas conflict raged into its 21st day.
In this undated image taken from video released by Israeli Defense Forces, a line of Israeli tanks are shown during an incursion into the Gaza Strip. (Photo | AP)
In this undated image taken from video released by Israeli Defense Forces, a line of Israeli tanks are shown during an incursion into the Gaza Strip. (Photo | AP)

Israel pounded northern Gaza and said it was "extending" its ground operation late Friday amid UN warnings of an "avalanche of human suffering" in the battered Palestinian territory.

"Following the series of strikes of the last days, the ground forces are extending the ground operation tonight," military spokesman Daniel Hagari told reporters.

His announcement followed two straight nights of tank incursions into Gaza.

Earlier, the military said it had increased its strikes "in a very significant way", as AFP live footage captured intense bombardment of northern Gaza.

The armed wing of the Islamist group Hamas said it responded with "salvos" of rockets aimed at Israel.

Hamas said all internet connections and communications across the territory had been cut, and accused Israel of taking the measure "to perpetrate massacres with bloody retaliatory strikes from the air, land and sea."

Israel has heavily bombarded Gaza since Hamas gunmen stormed across the border on October 7, killing 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and kidnapping over 220 others, according to Israeli officials.

The Hamas-run health ministry said Friday Israeli strikes on Gaza had now killed 7,326 people, mainly civilians and many of them children.

UN chief Antonio Guterres warned that Gaza faces "an unprecedented avalanche of human suffering" because of the lack of food, water and power during Israeli bombing in response to the October 7 attack.

The UN human rights office also raised the alarm over "war crimes" being committed as the Israel-Hamas conflict raged into its 21st day.

Concern is growing about regional fallout from the conflict, with the United States warning Iran against escalation while striking facilities in Syria it says were used by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and others.

The war, now in its 21st day, is the deadliest of five Gaza wars for both sides. The Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry said Thursday that more than 7,000 Palestinians have been killed so far — more than three times the number killed in the six-week-long Gaza war in 2014.

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Hamas says 'ready' for Israel ground invasion

  • Hamas is "ready" for an Israeli invasion of Gaza over the October 7 attacks, a top official of the Palestinian Islamist group said late Friday after Israel announced it would extend its ground operation.

  • "If Netanyahu decides to enter Gaza tonight, the resistance is ready," said Ezzat al-Rishaq, a senior member of the Hamas political bureau, on social media platform Telegram.

  • "The remains of his soldiers will be swallowed up by the land of Gaza."

  • US backs 'humanitarian pause' for Gaza aid: White House

    The United States backs pauses in hostilities between Israel and Hamas to allow aid to get into Gaza, the White House said on Friday as Israel said it was extending ground operations.

    A Recap of top developments so far

  • Israel's military says its ground forces will expand their activities in Gaza
  • Israel’s defence minister said the country expects to launch a long and difficult ground invasion
  • Internet and phone network were cut off in Gaza, following heavy Israeli airstrikes
  • Hamas says 'ready' for Israel ground invasion, calls on world to 'act immediately' to stop bombardment
  • Iran says militants have 'finger on trigger' in anticipation of Israeli ground offensive in Gaza
  • UN chief warned that Gaza faces "avalanche of human suffering" due to lack of food, water and power
  • People in Gaza are facing 'total darkness', warns chief of Palestine Red Crescent Society
  • Israeli army accused Hamas of using hospitals in Gaza Strip as operational centres
  • Israel's targeted raids in recent nights have seen forces, including tanks, enter Gaza
  • US strikes Iran-linked sites in Syria in retaliation for attacks on US troops
  • Israeli airstrikes in northern Gaza as its army extends 'ground operations'

    Explosions caused by Israeli airstrikes in the northern Gaza Strip, Friday, Oct. 27, 2023. (Photo | AP)
    Explosions caused by Israeli airstrikes in the northern Gaza Strip, Friday, Oct. 27, 2023. (Photo | AP)
    Explosions caused by Israeli airstrikes in the northern Gaza Strip, Friday, Oct. 27, 2023. (Photo | AP)
    Explosions caused by Israeli airstrikes in the northern Gaza Strip, Friday, Oct. 27, 2023. (Photo | AP)

    US says anti-Iran strikes in Syria hit ammunition

    The United States said Friday that its strikes in eastern Syria hit ammunition linked to Iran's elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and expected a "significant" impact on Tehran-backed militias.

    Hamas calls on world to 'act immediately' to stop Israeli bombardment

    Militant group Hamas called on the world to "act immediately" Friday to stop Israel's bombardment of Gaza, as intense strikes pounded the Palestinian territory.

    "We call on the Arab and Muslim countries and the international community to take responsibility and act immediately to stop the crimes and series of massacres against our people," Hamas said in a statement.

    Israel army says extending 'ground operations' into Gaza

    The Israeli army said it will extend "ground operations" in the Gaza Strip on Friday night after significantly intensifying its air strikes on the Palestinian territory.

    In this undated image taken from a video released by Israeli Defense Forces, a line of Israeli tanks are shown during an incursion into the Gaza Strip. (Photo | AP)
    In this undated image taken from a video released by Israeli Defense Forces, a line of Israeli tanks are shown during an incursion into the Gaza Strip. (Photo | AP)

    Israel's army says it has intensified Gaza strikes 'very significantly'

    The Israeli military said Friday it had increased its strikes on Gaza "in a very significant way", as AFP live footage captured intense bombardment of the territory's north. "We will continue to strike in Gaza City and around," military spokesman Daniel Hagari said in a televised address.

    Hamas govt says internet, communications cut across Gaza

  • The Hamas government said Israel "cut communications and most of the internet" across the Gaza Strip on Friday. The government's media office accused Israel of taking the measure "to perpetrate massacres with bloody retaliatory strikes from the air, land and sea," as heavy strikes hit northern Gaza.

  • AFP journalists in Gaza confirmed they were only able to communicate in limited areas where they could connect to Israeli networks across the border.

  • The Palestinian telecom provider Paltel says internet service in the Gaza Strip has been cut off by Israeli bombardment. Services were cut Friday evening, following a heavy round of Israeli airstrikes that lit up the night sky over the darkened territory.

  • Rights groups and journalists also say they lost contact with colleagues in the enclave. The Associated Press’s attempts to contact people in Gaza did not go through.

  • UN chief says Gaza faces 'avalanche of human suffering'

    The United Nations chief warned Friday that Gaza faces "an unprecedented avalanche of human suffering" due to a lack of food, water and power during the Israeli bombing in response to the Hamas attack.

  • "I repeat my call for a humanitarian ceasefire, the unconditional release of all hostages, and the delivery of life-saving supplies," UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in a statement.
  • "Misery is growing by the minute. Without a fundamental change, the people of Gaza will face an unprecedented avalanche of human suffering." READ FULL REPORT HERE

  • Iran says militants have 'finger on trigger' ahead of Israel's ground invasion

    Iran's foreign minister warned Friday that Lebanese and Palestinian militants had their "finger on the trigger" in anticipation of an Israeli ground offensive in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. Amir-Abdollahian insisted, however, that militants would decide on their own rather than at the behest of Iran. READ FULL REPORT HERE

    Intense Israeli strikes rock northern Gaza Strip

    Intense Israeli strikes rocked the northern Gaza Strip on Friday evening, live footage filmed by AFP showed. The Israeli military told AFP it is "continuously striking in the Gaza Strip" against the militant group Hamas that rules the Palestinian territory.

    Early morning airstrikes bring more death and destruction to Gaza

  • An early morning airstrike killed at least two people in a Gaza neighbourhood where several homes were damaged or destroyed. Chunks of concrete, clothing and broken furniture littered the street outside a home where the first floor remained standing.

  • The blast rocked Khan Younis hours before dawn, said Yasser Abu al-Arraj, who ran next door to pull a mother, daughter and a son, who was killed, from the wreckage. “May God avenge us from (Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu,” Abu al-Arraj said.

  • A woman who survived the attack gestured toward a pile of cinderblocks that had toppled, saying she and the 19 others who survived had to search for each other through a cloud of dust. Nine children huddled on cushions on the other side of the room. “People of Gaza are being shattered,” she said. “I can’t believe that my kids came out of this alive.”

  • At another house that was damaged, Soaad Abdulahadi said she had been having breakfast with her children when the ceiling started to collapse. “We just saw the house falling over our heads,” Abdulahadi said. “Half of them (my family) are in the hospital and the other half are displaced. This is our house, where should we go now?”

  • Ceasefire talks between Israel and Hamas ‘at advanced stage’, reports Al Jazeera

    Negotiations mediated by Qatar on ceasefire and prisoner exchange between Israel and Hamas are "quickly progressing and at an advanced stage", reports Al Jazeera. The Qatari media says negotiations are continuing but the developments could mark a major shift in the war.

    Israel army claims Hamas 'wages war from hospitals' in Gaza

    The Israeli army Friday accused Hamas of using hospitals in the Gaza Strip as operational centres for directing attacks against Israel, as the war rages in the Palestinian territory. "Hamas wages war from hospitals" in Gaza, military spokesman Daniel Hagari told journalists, adding that the Islamist group was also using fuel stored in these facilities for carrying out its operations.