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


Israel is open to a ceasefire deal involving an initial release of 33 hostages, according to three Israeli officials. For months, Israel had demanded that Hamas release at least 40 hostages during the first phase of a new truce. Now, the Israeli government is prepared to settle for only 33. The change was partly prompted by the fact that Israel believes some of the 40 have died in captivity, according to one of the officials. The shift has raised hopes that Israel and Hamas might be closer to sealing their first truce since a week-long ceasefire in November. Patrick Kingsley and Adam Rasgon report for the New York Times.

Hamas officials left Cairo today after talks with Egyptian officials on the new ceasefire proposal, according to Egypt’s state-owned Al-Qahera News. The channel said a Hamas delegation will return to Cairo with a written response to the proposal, without saying when. AP News reports. 

Deadly Israeli airstrikes flattened concrete buildings overnight in Rafah, according to news agencies. Reuters said the strikes killed 20, while the Palestinian news media reported the death toll was at least 24. Palestine TV, a channel backed by the Palestinian Authority, said the strikes had hit residential buildings. When asked for comment, the Israeli military issued a statement yesterday saying its “fighter jets struck terror targets where terrorists were operating within a civilian area in southern Gaza.” Liam Stack reports for the New York Times.

Prosecutors from the International Criminal Court (ICC) have interviewed staff from Gaza’s two largest hospitals, two sources told Reuters. The sources said ICC investigators had taken testimony from staff who had worked at Al-Shifa, the main hospital in Gaza City in the north, and at Nasser, the main hospital in the southern city of Khan Younis. It is the first confirmation that ICC investigators were speaking to medics about possible crimes in Gaza. The ICC’s Office of the Prosecutor declined to comment on operational matters in ongoing investigations, but has said it is investigating both sides of the conflict. Stephanie van den Berg reports for Reuters.


President Biden spoke with the leaders of Egypt and Qatar yesterday as he sought to increase pressure on Hamas to accept a new ceasefire and hostage release deal. According to a statement from the office of Egypt’s president, Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, he and Biden discussed the negotiations and Egypt’s efforts to broker a deal, as well as their support for a two-state solution, the importance of limiting regional conflict, and their opposition to a Rafah offensive. The White House said Biden also urged the emir of Qatar “to exert all efforts to secure the release of hostages held by Hamas,” saying that “this is now the only obstacle” to an immediate ceasefire. Peter Baker reports for the New York Times.

The State Department has found five Israeli military units responsible for gross human rights violations in individual incidents. All the incidents took place prior to the outbreak of the Gaza war. Four of the units “have effectively remediated these violations,” State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said yesterday, meaning they will remain eligible for U.S. military assistance. Washington is still deciding whether to restrict assistance to the remaining ultra-Orthodox Netzah Yehuda battalion. The Biden administration was reportedly close to announcing it would cut aid to the unit, but says new information from Israel means it will delay the decision. Jeniffer Hansler reports for CNN; Tom Bateman reports for BBC News.

A new Amnesty International report claims that Israel has used U.S.-supplied weapons against Palestinian civilians in alleged breaches of international law. A copy of the report was obtained by the Washington Post ahead of its release. Detailing incidents in which civilians have allegedly been killed or injured in Israel’s military campaign in Gaza, the report says there is an “extremely high risk that U.S.-made weapons and other materials and services provided to the Israeli government are being used in violation of international law.” It calls on Washington to “immediately suspend” the transfer of all weapons to Israel “so long as compliance with international humanitarian and human rights law is not demonstrated.” Missy Ryan reports for the Washington Post

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu asked Biden on Sunday to help prevent the ICC from issuing arrest warrants for senior Israeli officials relating to the war in Gaza, according to two Israeli officials. A spokesperson for the White House National Security Council declined to comment on the call, but said, “As we have publicly said many times, the ICC has no jurisdiction in this situation and we do not support its investigation.” Meanwhile, members of Congress are warning of a backlash if the ICC decides to issue arrest warrants, with House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) calling on the Biden administration yesterday to “immediately and unequivocally demand that the ICC stand down.” Barak Ravid reports for Axios; Rachel Pannett and Sarah Dadouch report for the Washington Post

Secretary of State Antony Blinken yesterday sought to push forward with plans for securing and rebuilding post-war Gaza, but was met with reticence from Arab states. Speaking at a World Economic Forum in Riyadh, Blinken said the Biden administration would continue its months-long pursuit of a “day after” blueprint for Gaza. Arab nations’ reluctance to commit troops or funding was immediately clear after Blinken’s remarks, when the foreign ministers of Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia said that before they would agree to participate in any peacekeeping operation, the pathway to a Palestinian state must be made clear. Missy Ryan reports for the Washington Post

The United States Central Command released images of the floating pier being built by the U.S. military offshore of Gaza. Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh said yesterday that the pier will cost the United States around $320 million. Helen Regan and Natasha Bertrand report for CNN.


The United States and Britain have urged Hamas to accept the latest Israeli truce proposal. Blinken said the proposal is “extraordinarily generous on the part of Israel,” adding, “The only thing standing between the people of Gaza and a ceasefire is Hamas. They have to decide and they have to decide quickly.” British foreign secretary David Cameron also described the Israeli proposal as “generous,” saying, “I hope Hamas do take this deal and frankly, all the pressure in the world and all the eyes in the world should be on them today saying ‘take that deal’.” Humeyra Pamuk, Alexander Cornwell, and Pesha Magid report for Reuters

Rival Palestinian groups Hamas and Fatah have expressed the political will to seek reconciliation through discussions at unity talks in Beijing, China’s foreign ministry said today. “The Palestinian National Liberation Movement and Islamic Resistance Group representatives arrived in Beijing a few days ago for in-depth and candid dialogue,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Lin Jian told a regular briefing. “They agreed to continue the course of talks to achieve the realization of Palestinian solidarity and unity at an early date.” Reuters reports. 


A Russian strike killed at least two people and wounded six others in Ukraine’s northeastern city of Kharkiv today, according to local officials. Reuters reports. 


The Indian government official who coordinated an assassination plot against an American Sikh activist that the U.S. thwarted last June was an officer in India’s intelligence service, a news investigation reveals. U.S. intelligence agencies have assessed that the operation was approved by the Indian service and that it likely would not have been undertaken without the approval of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s national security advisor. The plot played out around the time the Biden administration was feting Modi with a state dinner at the White House. Greg Miller, Gerry Shih and Ellen Nakashima report for the Washington Post.

Mexico and Ecuador begin their case today at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over the Ecuadorian raid on Mexico’s embassy in Quito in April. During the incident, Ecuadorian forces stormed the embassy to arrest a former vice president who had been seeking asylum. Mexico is arguing the actions violated the Vienna Convention and is asking the ICJ to suspend Ecuador from the U.N. Tara John reports for CNN.

The debris from a missile that landed in Kharkiv on Jan. 2 was from a North Korean ballistic missile, United Nations sanctions monitors told a Security Council committee yesterday. The U.N. sanctions monitors said that if the missile was under control of Russian forces, this would be a violation of the arms embargo imposed on North Korea in 2006. Michelle Nichols reports for Reuters.

Scotland’s first minister resigned yesterday. Humza Yousaf of the Scottish National Party quit after the collapse of a power sharing deal with the Scottish Greens. Yousaf has said he intends to continue acting until a successor has been elected. Andrew McDonald reports for POLITICO.


The Supreme Court yesterday denied ex-Trump White House adviser Peter Navarro’s bid to stay out of prison while appealing his conviction for evading a congressional subpoena from the House Jan. 6 committee. The decision means Navarro will likely serve his four-month prison term before arguing the appeal of his conviction before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia circuit. Ella Lee reports for The Hill


Former President Trump’s hush money trial resumes today with testimony from the third prosecution witness, banker Gary Farro. Farro helped Trump’s former attorney Michael Cohen open accounts, one of which was used to buy the silence of adult film actress Stormy Daniels. AP News reports.