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A curated weekday guide to major news and developments over the past 24 hours. Here’s today’s news


The Israeli military has not yet presented its plan to the government for evacuating civilians from Rafah, an Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spokesperson said today. “The government has instructed the IDF to devise a plan to achieve our goals, our war goals, in the area of Rafah,” IDF spokesperson Lt. Col. Peter Lerner said. “The plan that you’re asking for has still yet to be presented, of course, to the government.” Alex Stambaugh reports for CNN.

More than 12,300 children have died in Gaza since the start of the war, the Hamas-run health ministry said today. It added the total death toll since Oct. 7 had risen to 28,340. Mithil Aggarwal reports for NBC News.


Egypt has fortified its border with Gaza and deployed more troops in North Sinai as a “precautionary measure” ahead of an expected Israeli ground operation in Rafah, two security officials told CNN.


Israel should “stop and think seriously before it takes any further action” in Rafah, British foreign secretary David Cameron said yesterday. When asked about the situation in Rafah and whether Israel’s actions had gone beyond international law, Cameron said, “We think it is impossible to see how you can fight a war amongst these people. There’s nowhere for them to go … what we want is an immediate pause in the fighting and we want that pause to lead to a ceasefire.” Reuters reports.

Britain imposed sanctions on four Israeli nationals yesterday, saying they were extremist settlers who had violently attacked Palestinians in the West Bank. “Extremist Israeli settlers are threatening Palestinians, often at gunpoint, and forcing them off land that is rightfully theirs,” Cameron said. “This behavior is illegal and unacceptable. Israel must also take stronger action and put a stop to settler violence. Too often, we see commitments made and undertakings given, but not followed through.” Reuters reports. 

The Dutch government is lodging an appeal to the Dutch Supreme Court following the judgment of the Hague Court of Appeal that the Netherlands must cease exporting American F-35 parts to Israel. “The government believes it is up to the State to determine its foreign policy [sic] … in the meantime, the government will consult with international partners within the F-35 programme very soon in order to secure the Netherlands’ role within the programme,” the statement said.

International Criminal Court prosecutor Karim Khan said he was deeply concerned about reports of bombing and a potential ground incursion by Israeli forces into Rafah. In a post on X, Khan said the court was “actively investigating any crimes allegedly committed” in Gaza and that “those who are in breach of the law will be held accountable.” NBC News reports. 

France has delivered a proposal to Beirut aimed at ending hostilities with Israel and settling the Lebanon-Israel border dispute, according to a document seen by Reuters. The document was delivered last week by French Foreign Minister Stephane Sejourne to top Lebanese state officials including Prime Minister Najib Mikati, four senior Lebanese and three French officials said.

The Kremlin said today that it was “ready to support any action that will lead to the release of the hostages and a ceasefire.” “But we believe that the actions should be constructive, aimed at a comprehensive solution of the problem within the framework of international law and previously-adopted Security Council resolutions,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov added. Reuters reports. 

E.U. foreign policy chief Josep Borrell has invited Philippe Lazzarini, commissioner of the U.N. agency for Palestine Refugees, to discuss matters as countries suspend funding to the aid agency while the U.N. investigates allegations of its staff members’ ties to Hamas. “It is not a secret that the Israeli government wants to get rid of UNRWA,” Borell said, “Not [just] now, for many years before, [they have] wanted to get rid of UNRWA because they believed that if they get rid of UNRWA, they get rid of the problem of the Palestinian refugees. No, it will make it still worse.” Doha Madani reports for NBC News.


President Biden warned Israel yesterday against invading Rafah and insisted the United States would not support any operation that fails to account for the safety of Palestinians who fled there under Israeli orders. Speaking at a joint appearance with King Abdullah II of Jordan at the White house, Biden said, “The major military operation in Rafah should not proceed without a credible plan for ensuring the safety and support of more than one million people sheltering there. They need to be protected.” He added, “We’ve also been clear from the start: We oppose any forced displacement of Palestinians from Gaza.” Adam Cancryn reports for POLITICO.

The United States called on Israel to urgently investigate the death of a five-year-old Palestinian girl, Hind Rajib, who was found dead this weekend after being trapped in a car in Gaza with members of her family who were reportedly shot to death by Israeli forces. Rescue workers dispatched to find her were also reportedly shot and killed. State Department spokesperson Matt Miller said yesterday, “We have asked the Israeli authorities to investigate this incident on an urgent basis. We understand that they’re doing so. We expect to see those results [in] a timely fashion and they should include accountability measures as appropriate.” Jennifer Hansler reports for CNN.

The United States does not view the recent Israeli airstrike in Rafah as “the launch of a full-scale offensive,” State Department spokesperson Matt Miller said yesterday. Israel has “conducted airstrikes against Rafah really since going back to the original days of the campaign,” he said. 


The Greek-owned commercial vessel targeted yesterday by the Houthis in the Red Sea was carrying corn from Brazil to Iran, according to the U.S. Central Command and the State Department. The attack appears to be the first time the Houthis have targeted a ship bound for Iran, which provides support for the rebel group. CNN reports. 


Russia warned the West today that Moscow would be “extremely tough” if the United States and the European Union seized hundreds of billions of dollars in Russian assets. “This is theft: It’s the appropriation of something that doesn’t belong to you,” Russian Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said. “Considering that our country has qualified this as theft, the attitude will be towards thieves.” The remarks follow the E.U. adopting a law yesterday to set aside windfall profits made on Russian central bank assets, the bloc’s first concrete step toward using the money to finance the reconstruction of Ukraine. Reuters reports. 

Russia is preparing for a military confrontation with the West within the next decade but could be deterred by a counter build-up of armed forces, Estonia’s Foreign Intelligence Service said today. Andrius Sytas reports for Reuters.

Russian police have put Estonia’s prime minister Kaja Kallas, its state secretary, and Lithuania’s culture minister on the wanted list, according to the Russian Interior Ministry’s database. Kallas is wanted for “desecration of historical memory,” while Baltic officials were accused of “destroying monuments to Soviet soldiers.” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said, “This is only the beginning.” Reuters reports. 

South Africa has ordered the deployment of 2,900 soldiers to help fight against armed rebel groups in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. The troops will be posted as part of the southern African mission in the DRC (SAMIDRC), which was approved by the regional bloc in May. The mission is replacing the East African regional force, which left DRC in December after the government deemed it ineffective. BBC News reports. 

Armenia said today that four of its soldiers were killed by Azerbaijani fire along the heavily militarized border, the first fatal incident since peace talks began last year to end more than 30 years of intermittent war. Azerbaijan’s border service said it had staged a “revenge operation” for a “provocation” it said Armenian forces had committed the day before. Felix Light and Nailia Bagirova reports for Reuters.


Ukraine claims it has evidence that Russia fired an advanced hypersonic missile – one that experts say is almost impossible to shoot down – for the first time since the start of the war. Brad Lendon reports for CNN.

Russia attacked the central Ukrainian city of Dnipro with missiles and drones today, damaging a power plant and forcing authorities to close schools and evacuate a hospital. Ukraine reported it shot down 16 out of 23 drones. Reuters reports. 


Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was put under general anesthesia yesterday for a non-surgical procedure to treat an “emergent bladder issue,” his doctors said in a statement. Austin was forced to cancel a planned trip to Brussels this week as a result of the episode, and will instead attend the monthly meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group virtually. Austin’s functions and duties were transferred yesterday to the Deputy Secretary of Defense, Kathleen Hicks. Adam Carlson, Luis Martinez, Anne Flaherty, and Chris Boccia report for ABC News.

The Senate passed 70-29 a long-awaited $95 billion foreign aid package for Ukraine and Israel early today, delivering a bipartisan endorsement of the legislation after months of negotiations. The emergency aid legislation provides $60.1 billion for Kyiv, $14.1 billion for Israel’s war against Hamas, and almost $10 billion for humanitarian aid for civilians in conflict zones, including Palestinians in Gaza. Karoun Demirjian reports for the New York Times.

Several Democratic lawmakers said yesterday that Congress must take new steps to safeguard NATO after former President Trump said he would “encourage” Russia to attack members that fail to meet their financial commitments. Trump’s comments have reignited concerns among NATO supporters that he could dramatically undermine the pact without withdrawing if he returns to the White House next year. Joe Gould, Connor O’Brien, and Paul Mcleary report for POLITICO.


Former President Trump asked the Supreme Court to block a lower court ruling permitting criminal prosecution against him stemming from his bid to subvert the 2020 election results. Trump’s attorneys argued in a 39-page motion that a trial would “radically disrupt” his reelection bid, and that permitting criminal charges against a former president for actions during their term would set a precedent for “such prosecutions [to] reoccur and become increasingly common, ushering in destructive cycles of recrimination. Without immunity from criminal prosecution, the Presidency as we know it will cease to exist.” Anne E. Marimow reports for the Washington Post.

The Judge presiding over Trump’s criminal case in Georgia is progressing with a Thursday hearing to determine whether District Attorney Fani Willis and the prosecution team should be disqualified leading the case. “The state has admitted a relationship existed [between Willis and special prosecutor Nathan Wade],” Judge Scott McAfee said yesterday, “And so, what remains to be proven is the existence and extent of any financial benefit, again, if there even was one … I think an evidentiary hearing must occur to establish the record on those core allegations.” Betsy Woodruff Swan and Kyle Cheney report for POLITICO.