Israel-Gaza live updates: Hezbollah fires 200 rockets toward Israel

Written by on July 4, 2024

Tents sheltering displaced Palestinians in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip are pictured on June 4, 2024 amid the ongoing conflict in the Palestinian territory between Israel and Hamas. (Photo by EYAD BABA/AFP via Getty Images)

(NEW YORK) — As the Israel-Hamas war continues, negotiations have stalled to secure the release of hostages taken by the terrorist organization, and Israeli forces continue to launch incursions in the southern Gazan town of Rafah ahead of a possible large-scale invasion.

Here’s how the news is developing. All times Eastern:

10:00 AM EDT
Biden to speak with Netanyahu: Source

President Joe Biden is expected to speak with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday, according to a source familiar with the plan.

Even as Biden tries to stave off criticism for his debate performance in the U.S., he is also trying to tamp down the mounting conflict between Israel and Hezbollah on the border with Lebanon. Hundreds of rockets were fired into northern Israel on Thursday, though no one was injured.

6:01 AM EDT
Hezbollah fires 200 rockets, drones toward Israel

Hezbollah militants said they fired more than 200 rockets and drones toward Israel on Thursday.

Sirens and alerts began sounding throughout northern Israel early on Thursday, officials said.

As the sirens began “numerous projectiles and suspicious aerial targets crossed from Lebanon into Israeli territory,” the Israel Defense Forces said.

Jul 03, 1:44 PM
Israel assassinates highest ranking Hezbollah commander since Oct. 8

Israel assassinated the commander of Hezbollah’s Aziz Unit, based in southern Lebanon, Israel claimed and Hezbollah acknowledged.

Muhammad Ni’Mah Nasser is one of the most senior commanders killed since Hezbollah began firing at Israel in solidarity with Gaza on Oct. 8.

Hezbollah has responded with around 100 rockets in the last three hours, according to the IDF. No major damage has been reported.

Both sides have said they are ready for war and that they are ready to ink a peace deal brokered by U.S. envoy Amos Hochstein. A senior Hezbollah official said this week it can only sign the deal after Israel reaches a cease-fire with Hamas in Gaza.

-ABC News’ Matt Gutman

Jul 02, 4:34 PM
European Gaza Hospital now empty following evacuation orders: WHO

All patients and medical staff have left European Gaza Hospital in southern Gaza, following evacuation orders from the Israel Defense Forces in Khan Younis, the World Health Organization said Tuesday.

The hospital, which had 320 patients, is “now completely empty,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.

“It is devastating to see the 650-bed-capacity hospital out of service at a time when access to health care is urgently needed,” he said in a statement while calling on the hospital to be made operational “immediately.”

Most patients were being referred to Nasser Medical Complex, which is now at full capacity and facing a shortage of medical supplies, the WHO said.

Jul 02, 4:16 PM
Evacuation order is largest in Gaza since October: UN

The Israel Defense Forces’ evacuation order for a region in southern Gaza on Monday was the largest such order since October 2023, according to the United Nations.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East estimated that 250,000 people are impacted by the evacuation order in Khan Younis. The evacuation zone covers 117 square kilometers, according to U.N. spokesperson Stephane Dujarric.

Jul 01, 1:12 PM
IDF orders evacuation of area in Khan Younis amid response to rocket attack

The Israel Defense Forces ordered hundreds of people in Khan Younis in southern Gaza to evacuate amid its response to a rocket attack, the military said.

The area for evacuation is near the European Hospital, according to a leaflet distributed in the region Monday.

“For your safety, you must evacuate immediately to the humanitarian zone,” the leaflet stated.

The IDF said the evacuation is in response to an earlier rocket attack that came from the area involving approximately 20 projectiles.

“A number of the projectiles were intercepted and some of the projectiles fell inside southern Israel. No injuries were reported,” the IDF said in a statement. “IDF Artillery is currently striking the sources of the fire.”

-ABC News’ Sami Zyara and Matt Gutman

Jun 29, 3:44 PM
Hostage speaks 1st time since release

Noa Argamani, one of four hostages rescued during a deadly IDF raid on June 8, released a video thanking Israeli forces for rescuing her and calls for the release of the remaining hostages, including her boyfriend, in her first public remarks since she was released.

They were separated during the kidnapping, according to Argamani.

“I want to take this opportunity to remind everyone that there are still 120 hostages in Hamas captivity. Among them is Avinatan Or, my partner, from whom I was separated at the moment of abduction. Although I’m home now, we can’t forget about the hostages who are still in Hamas captivity, and we must do everything possible to bring them back home,” Argamani said.

-ABC News’ Victoria Beaule

Jun 28, 2:31 PM
Military pier in Gaza to be taken offline again: US official

The U.S. military pier in Gaza will be taken offline again on Friday and moved to the Israeli port of Ashdod due to high seas, according to a U.S. official.

This is a precautionary move to protect the pier from breaking due to rough waves, the official said.

This is the third time the pier has had to be moved to Ashdod because of weather. The pier has been operational only about half of the time since it opened in mid-May.

“I don’t have a date of when the pier would be reinstalled,” Defense Department deputy spokesperson Sabrina Singh told reporters Friday, noting that Centcom will assess the sea conditions over the weekend.

As the pier was moved away Friday, two U.S. officials told ABC News that officials are considering not re-installing the pier until the humanitarian aid that it brought to Gaza gets distributed. More than 19 million pounds of aid has been delivered to Gaza via the pier but it’s now piling up at the staging point at the edge of the pier, Singh said.

Inspectors General at the Pentagon and the U.S. Agency for International Development announced Thursday that they’re launching reviews of the mission to deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza via the military’s temporary pier system.

-ABC News’ Anne Flaherty and Luis Martinez

Jun 28, 11:31 AM
Israel, US discussing transfer of Patriot air defense batteries to Ukraine

Israel and the U.S. are discussing the transfer of Patriot air defense batteries to Ukraine, a source familiar with the matter told ABC News.

This agreement — not yet finalized, according to the source — would mark a shift in Israel’s public policy following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

A key factor behind Israel’s willingness to discuss the transfer of Patriot air defense batteries is the tightening military alliance between Russia and Iran.

In April, Israel announced the decommissioning of U.S.-donated Patriot systems from its aerial defense array. Security sources previously said Patriot has been successfully replaced by the Israeli-made David’s Sling air and missile defense system.

-ABC News’ Dana Savir

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