Israel called for an evacuation of all civilians in Gaza City and gave the United Nations 24 hours to move its staff from nearby areas, indicating a ground operation could be coming soon.
(Bloomberg) — Israel called for an evacuation of all civilians in Gaza City and gave the United Nations 24 hours to move its staff from nearby areas, indicating a ground operation could be coming soon.
The UN said it would be impossible to move the million or so inhabitants of the northern half of Gaza Strip to the south, as demanded by Israeli authorities.
Hamas, designated a terrorist group by the US, European Union and UK, called for a “Day of Rage” across the Muslim world and mass protests on Friday against Israel. Its surprise attack on Israel last Saturday claimed 1,300 lives, while more than 1,500 people have been killed in Gaza in retaliatory airstrikes. Israel vowed to eliminate Hamas in its entirety, prompting warnings from Iran — the militant group’s main supporter — of a multi-front war should the offensive on Gaza continue.
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(All time stamps are Israeli time)
Iran Holds Street Marches to Support Palestinians (11:25am)
Iranian state TV showed marches “in support of the Palestinian resistance” in the capital Tehran and the central city of Arak, without saying how many people attended.
The main thoroughfare in central Tehran has been closed to traffic, the semi-official Tasnim reported.
Tasnim also reported a march in Yemen’s Sa’dah. while state-run Al Alam showed one in the Palestinian Khan Dannun camp in Syria. Niether indicated the size of the events.
Friday Protests Start in Iraqi Capital (11:08 a.m.)
Thousands of Iraqi protesters carrying Palestinian flags began protesting Israel’s bombardment of targets in Gaza, after Hamas’s call for a “Day of Rage” across the Islamic world, according to footage carried by Al Jazeera TV channel.
Markets Fluctuate on Middle East Tensions (11:07 a.m.)
The shekel was little changed at 3.9701 per dollar, after paring earlier gains of as much as 0.2%, as the prospect of intervention by the Bank of Israel reined in volatility. The currency has lost 3.1% against dollar in the wake of Saturday’s attacks by Hamas and is headed for its worst week since February.
Israel’s dollar debt remains under pressure after falling 1.8% this week through Thursday, among the biggest losers across emerging markets. The yield on the security due in 2030 climbed 25 basis points to 5.9% in early London trade on Friday.
Oil was headed for a weekly gain on fears the conflicct could destabilize the region and crimp global supplies.
Blinken Continues Regional Trip After Israel Visit (9 a.m.)
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will visit Bahrain on Friday in addition to holding meetings in Jordan and Qatar, the State Department said, as the top US diplomat continues a whirlwind Middle East trip aimed at shoring up support for Israel.
Blinken is set to meet Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas this morning before flying out to meet officials in Qatar and Bahrain and ending the day in Saudi Arabia. He is scheduled to meet Saudi officials ahead of short visits to the UAE and Egypt before returning to Washington.
Turkey’s Foreign Minister in Egypt to Discuss Gaza Aid (8:25 a.m.)
Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan is headed to Egypt to discuss sending humanitarian aid from Turkey to the Gaza Strip after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Israel of violating human rights by cutting water, electricity and food supplies to the area.
Erdogan said Israel’s Gaza restrictions have aggravated the suffering of more than 2 million people inside the 360 square kilometers (140 square miles) of territory. He also accused the US of fueling tensions in the region by deploying a group of warships in the eastern Mediterranean.
Gazans Trying to Flee War Have Egypt Weighing Aid and Security
Germany Warns of Regional Escalation (8:30 a.m.)
German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock called last weekend’s Hamas attack a “brutal watershed,” warning that the militant group risks destabilizing the entire region.
“Where cautious steps toward rapprochement have recently taken place, Hamas wants to start a conflagration,” Baerbock said ahead of a trip to Israel Friday. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and European Parliament President Roberta Metsola will also visit the country on Friday, the EU said separately.
Hamas Operatives’ Homes, Tunnels Targeted (8:19 am)
Israel Defense Forces said they carried out widespread airstrikes overnight in the Gaza Strip on Hamas military targets and homes of senior operatives.
Iran Says New Front Possible if ‘Israeli War Crimes’ Continue (7:53 a.m.)
“The continuation of the war crimes against Palestine and Gaza will definitely be met with reactions in other axes in the region,” Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian said in Lebanon, referring to the “axis of resistance” of Iran-backed anti-Israel groups in the region.
Hezbollah, Israel Trade Fire on Lebanon’s Volatile Border
Asked about the possibility of a new front being opened in the war, he said “every possibility and decision by the other currents of the resistance is likely” if the “war crimes and humanitarian blockade of Gaza and Palestine” continue.
Israel Urges Evacuation Of Gaza City for ‘Safety’ of Civilians (7:31 a.m.)
The Israeli army urged Palestinian civilians in Gaza City to move south of the Gaza river, warning of significant military activity in the area in the coming days.
Israel “calls for the evacuation of all civilians of Gaza City from their homes southwards for their own safety and protection and move to the area south of the Wadi Gaza,” Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.
The United Nations said Israel had given 24 hours for the evacuation, though the Israeli statement itself gave no timeframe.
UN Tells Israel Not to Attack Civilians in Gaza Shelters, Schools (7:15 a.m.)
The UN said it had relocated its central operations center and international staff to a location in the south of Gaza to continue its humanitarian operations for Palestinian refugees in the Gaza Strip.
UN Calls Israel Order to Evacuate 1.1 Million in Gaza Impossible
It urged “the Israeli authorities to protect all civilians in UNRWA shelters including schools,” a statement from the UN Relief and Works Agency said. “They are UN facilities. They must be protected at all times and must never come under attack in accordance with international humanitarian law.”
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