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A curated weekday guide to major news and developments over the past 24 hours. Here’s today’s news
A second Israeli airstrike on Jabalia refugee camp yesterday killed at least 80 people, according to a local hospital official. The Civil Defense described the attack as a “second massacre.” The majority of casualties are said to be women and children. Video footage from the site shows a deep crater surrounded by catastrophic damage. Kareem Khadder, Abeer Salman and Tara John report for CNN.
The Hamas-run health ministry says the Gaza death toll now exceeds 9,000, including 3,760 children. The ministry has said that 32,000 people have been injured in the fighting thus far. BBC News reports.
Israeli airstrikes struck near the Al Quds hospital in Gaza City, a facility where thousands of people are sheltering according to the hospital’s director Dr. Bashar Mourad. The hospital is the second-largest in the urban center of Gaza City. Abeer Salman and Zeena Saifi report for CNN.
The main generator for the Indonesian Hospital in northern Gaza ran out of service last night, according to Dr. Atef Al Kahlout, the head of the hospital, confirmed today. A secondary generator was running in some parts of the hospital, but the entire hospital’s electromechanical systems had stopped working – including ventilation systems in operating rooms, morgue refrigerators, and the facility’s only oxygen station. The hospital is the nearest medical facility to the Jabalia refugee camp, which was targeted again yesterday by tThe Israeli military. Mohammed Tawfeeq reports for CNN.
Hamas is stockpiling more than 200,000 gallons of fuel for rockets and generators which provide clear air and electricity to its network of underground tunnels, according to U.S. officials, current and former Israeli officials, and academics. Hamas has demanded fuel deliveries to Gaza during negotiations to allow foreign nationals to leave Gaza and in talks concerning the release of hostages. Anna Schecter reports for NBC News.
ISRAEL-HAMAS WAR – REGIONAL RESPONSE
Jordan recalled its ambassador from Israel and ordered the Israeli ambassador to not return. Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi said the Jordanian ambassador could only return to Tel Aviv if Israel ended the “crisis it has caused.” He said Jordan “rejects and condemns the Israeli war on Gaza that kills innocents and is causing an unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe.” Safadi also claimed the war brought “dangerous risks” of a wider regional conflict, threatening global peace. Suleiman Al-Khalidi reports for Reuters.
Egypt’s foreign ministry confirmed they are working to evacuate around 7,000 people through the Rafah border crossing, as people from “more than 60 countries” are being allowed to cross. Evacuations began yesterday for the first time since war broke out on Oct.7. Lawahez Jabari reports for NBC News.
ISRAEL-HAMAS WAR – INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ordered his country’s officials to support Palestine, and may sell weapons to militant groups in the Middle East, according to South Korea’s spy agency. North Korea previously has sold rocket launchers to Hamas, and it is possible more weapons will be traded as the war continues. South Korean lawmakers also claimed Hamas appeared to use North Korean weapons in the Oct.7 attack, based on video and photo footage, a claim that Pyongang has dismissed as false. Dasl Yoon reports for the Wall Street Journal.
The U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees said 70 of its workers have been killed and at least 22 injured since the war broke out on Oct.7. “This is the highest number of U.N. aid workers killed in a conflict in such a short time,” said the Agency. Alan Cullison reports for the Wall Street Journal.
ISRAEL-HAMAS WAR – U.S. RESPONSE
The State Department said U.S. officials are in contact with around 400 U.S. citizens needing to leave Gaza, following the opening of the Rafah border crossing into Egypt. President Joe Biden said the United States will be “working nonstop to get Americans out of Gaza as safely as possible.” The State Department has provided specific instructions including departure dates for U.S. citizens in Gaza. Vivian Aalama, Summer Said and Alan Cullison report for the Wall Street Journal.
President Joe Biden said yesterday that a “pause” was needed in the Israel-Hamas war, in response to a question from a protester who interrupted Biden at his Minnesota campaign yesterday. When asked to clarify what he meant by pause, Biden replied that “a pause means give time to get the prisoners out [sic].” The protester identified herself as Rabbi Jesicca Rosenberg, who told BIden “you care about Jewish people…as a Rabbi, I need you to call for a cease-fire right now.” Zoë Richards reports for NBC News.
The U.S. government is preparing for potential Iranian cyberattacks, as concern grows surrounding the possibility of retaliation due to its support for Israel. FBI Director Christopher Wray said that “the cyber targeting of American interests and critical infrastructure that we already see conducted by Iran…we can expect to get worse if the conflict expands.” Several U.S. federal agencies emphasized they do not have intelligence suggesting Iran is planning imminent attacks on critical infrastructure. Maggie Miller reports for POLITICO.
Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva temporarily militarized the security at major ports and airports yesterday, as he seeks to reduce rising crime. Lula announced the military will work with federal officers to manage security at Latin America’s largest airport and port, which are key logistical facilities for European cocaine exports as well as weapon contraband. The measure is expected to end in May 2024. Lisandra Paraguassu reports for Reuters.
Between 9,000 to 10,000 Afghans are crossing the border every day from Pakistan, as scenes at the crossing have been described as chaotic and desperate. Security forces are detaining and deporting unregistered and/or undocumented foreigners, most of whom are Afghans, following the crackdown on illegal migration. Afghans returning have nowhere to go and there are concerns over their ability to reintegrate in a country which has suffered through decades of war, a poor economy, millions of displaced people, and recurring natural disasters. Taliban authorities have prepared temporary camps for Afghans in border areas, but returnees face uncertainty. AP News reports.
Six Chinese nationals and three Filipinos were reportedly abducted from a neighborhood in southern Metro Manila in the Philippines, according to the police anti-kidnapping chief Cosme Abrenica. The Filipinos were released shortly after abduction, but there is no “information if its kidnap-for-ransom, kidnapping, or what the motive is” for the Chinese nationals who remain missing. Phillip Aguilar, the police chief of Calauan town where the Filipino victims were found, said a victim recalled how the kidnappers forced entry to their homes before dawn on Monday. Mikhail Flores reports for Reuters.
China will “actively foster a new type of marriage and childbearing culture,” according to President Xi Jinping at his country’s National Women’s Congress gathering yesterday. The Congress is held every five years and is traditionally viewed as a platform where the ruling Communist Party discusses its commitment to women. The comments are significant given that, for the first time in two decades, the party’s executive policymaking body is exclusively male. Alexandra Stevenson reports for the New York Times.
The Philippine foreign ministry accused China of intruding into its waters following earlier incidents this week involving military vessels in the South China Sea. The Department for Foreign Affairs said the Chinese military’s claim that their ship “illegally entered” waters near the Shoal has “no legal basis and only serves to raise tensions…it is China that is intruding into Philippine waters.” Both China and the Philippines have claims on the Scarborough Shoal. Mikhail Flores reports for Reuters.
Vienna’s central cemetery was set on fire and graffitied with swastikas in an anti-semitic attack yesterday. Jewish Community of Vienna President Oskar Deutsch wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter, that the fire burned the entrance lobby to a ceremonial hall but did not cause any injuries. Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer said “antisemitism has no place in our society.” AP News reports.
The Turkish parliament will not accelerate Sweden’s NATO bid, Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Fuat Oktay said. Turkey said Sweden needs to take further measures against those which they label as terrorist organizations, including acting against the supporters of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party and the network Ankara claims is responsible for a 2016 coup attempt. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has said he wants a “speedy vote” by Turkey’s parliament. Huseyin Hayatsever and Tuvan Gumrukcu report for Reuters.
Russia attacked 118 Ukrainian towns and villages in the past 24 hours, the highest number this year, said Ukrainian Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko. Most of the communities hit were near the front lines in the south and east, with 10 of UKraine’s 27 regions being bombarded. The town of Avdiivka saw more than 40 shelling attacks in one day, and a disused oil refinery in Kremenchuk was set alight by a Russian drone. There were also attacks in the southern city of Nikopol, on the Dnipro river bank. Ukraine’s counter-offensive remains slow to progress, as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy urges allies to stay united and provide weapons. Paul Kirby reports for BBC News.
A total of 260 Ukrainian civilians have been killed after stepping on landmines or other explosives since the war broke out 20 months ago, the Ukrainian military said yesterday. They estimate that one third of its territory contains war detritus and that 571 injuries have occurred due to unexploded mines and ordinances on the battlefield. Kyiv is seeking to raise an estimated $37 billion in funding, with the help of its allies, for increased specialist operations to clear the mines. Yuliia Dysa reports for Reuters.
China and the United States will meet next Monday for a discussion on nuclear arms-control and nonproliferation, the first of such talks since the Obama administration. The meeting is said to focus on reducing the risk of miscalculation, although it does not indicate that any formal negotiations of nuclear forces will follow. “The Chinese leadership is still preparing for long-term competition with the United States,” said Tong Zhao of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. The meeting will precede a scheduled summit between President Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping later this month. Michael R.Gordon reports for the Wall Street Journal.
DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS – TRUMP LEGAL MATTERS
Former President Donald Trump’s New York civil fraud trial continues, as Donald Trump Jr,a codefendant alongside his brother Eric Trump,testified in court yesterday. Questions from the prosecution focussed on Trump Jr’s role in the Trump Organization business. Trump and his sons deny allegations of falsifying business records and committing insurance fraud, amongst other charges. The trial continues this week as Trump’s daughter Ivanka is expected to give evidence later this week. BBC News reports.
Former President Donald Trump’s request for his case challenging eligibility to future office to be thrown out was dismissed yesterday by a Colorado judge. The decision means the trial will continue through Friday before a final ruling. Trump’s team argued that his words and actions leading up to the Capitol Jan.6 attacks were protected by the First Amendment. Judge Wallace emphasized the decision to reject the request does not indicate which side is right and that the constitutional questions at play were difficult. Maggie Astor reports for the New York Times.
OTHER DOMESTIC DEVELOPMENTS
The House voted to dismiss a series of disciplinary votes yesterday, including a measure to censure Raashida Tlaib (D-Mich), and a motion to expel George Santons (R-N.Y.). An expulsion vote requires a two-thirds majority vote, while a censure and motions to table only requires a simple majority. The vote stems from Tlaib’s support for a protest on Gaza in a House office building, which Republicans labeled as an “insurrection.” Meanwhile Santos, who has pleaded not guilty to charges, including falsifying records, will face trial shortly before the next House election. Nicholas Wu and Olivia Beavers report for POLITICO.
President Joe Biden and the first lady will travel to Lewiston, Maine, on Friday to meet with survivors of the mass shooting which left 18 people dead and injured over a dozen. The shooter was found dead last Friday following a days-long manhunt. The visit will see Biden “pay respects to the victims of the horrific attack and grieve with families and community members, as well as meet with first responders, nurses and others on the front lines of the response,” the White House confirmed in a statement. Myah Ward reports for POLITICO