04:38 GMT18 June 2021
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Air raid sirens went off in southern Israel on Tuesday morning, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said.

    The Times of Israel has reported that sirens went off in the Sha'ar Hanegev region and in Nahal Oz near the Gaza Strip.

    The current escalation in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict started earlier this month when unrest began in East Jerusalem after a court decided to evict several Palestinian families from the area.

    A tower housing AP, Al Jazeera offices collapses after Israeli missile strikes in Gaza city, May 15, 2021.
    A tower housing AP, Al Jazeera offices collapses after Israeli missile strikes in Gaza city, May 15, 2021.

    The situation on the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip has been deteriorating amid heavy rocket exchanges that have resulted in the deaths of over 200 Palestinians, including more than 60 children.

    Israel has reported 10 people killed and 50 injured, while the Palestinian Red Crescent says that more than 1,300 Palestinians have been injured amid the continuing escalation. More than 3,300 rockets have been launched from the Gaza Strip, while the Israeli Army said it has launched hundreds of rockets targeting Hamas infrastructure and militants.

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    • 02:53

      IDF: Sirens Sounding in Southern Israel

      Early on Wednesday morning, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced that rocket sirens sounded in the southern part of Israel.

    • 01:24

      France, Several Other Nations Preparing Draft UNSC Resolution on Israel, Palestine, Source Says

      UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) – France, together with Tunisia, Egypt and Jordan, is preparing a draft UN Security Council resolution that will call for the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas as well as organizing humanitarian corridor in the conflict zone, a diplomatic source in the UN Security Council told Sputnik.

      "France is preparing with Egypt, Tunisia and Jordan a draft resolution calling for a ceasefire and humanitarian access. It is written to be acceptable to everyone," the source said.

      The current episode of the long-standing Israeli-Palestinian conflict broke out last week after civil unrest in East Jerusalem, prompting hostilities on the border of Israel and the Gaza Strip, with Palestinian militants having fired thousands of rockets at Israel and the latter retaliating with airstrikes.

      So far, the UN Security Council has adopted no statements on the Israeli-Palestinian violence over the US veto on the documents.

    • 00:32

      US Condemns Turkish President's Remarks About Jewish People

      U.S. State Department Spokesman Ned Price speaks during a news briefing at the State Department in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021.

      US Condemns Turkish President's Remarks About Jewish People

      WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The United States condemns Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's remarks against the Jewish people, US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said in a statement.
      Read more
    • 00:32

      Biden Reportedly Delivers Firmer Message to Netanyahu in Private Call Than in Public Statement

      US Vice President Joe Biden (L) and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu give joint statements to press in the prime minister's office in Jerusalem on March 9, 2016. - Biden implicitly criticised Palestinian leaders for not condemning attacks against Israelis, as an upsurge in violence marred his visit.

      Biden Reportedly Delivers Firmer Message to Netanyahu in Private Call Than in Public Statement

      As tensions between Tel Aviv and Hamas have intensified during the month, seeing rocket exchanges between Israel and Gaza, US President Joe Biden has voiced his support for a ceasefire and met criticism from some Democratic lawmakers who have urged him to take a tougher stance on the conflict.
      Read more
    • 00:11

      UN Hopes to Release $14Mln to Aid Palestinians in Gaza, Relief Coordinator Says

      UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) - UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock said he hopes the world body will release $14 million for emergency assistance to the Palestinian families amid the escalation of the situation in the Gaza Strip.

      “We need adequate funding to enable a speedy response. The Humanitarian Coordinator, Lynn Hastings, hopes to release some US$14 million from the OPT Humanitarian Fund,” Lowcock said on Tuesday.

      Lowcock added that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will soon launch a fuller appeal as the initial funding seeks to meet only immediate needs.

    • 21:21

      Hamas Refutes Israeli TV Reports It Agreed to Ceasefire With Tel-Aviv

      GAZA (Sputnik) – The Gaza Strip-based Hamas Islamist movement has refuted the reports about its consent to establish a ceasefire with Israel starting from Thursday, a member of the Hamas Political Bureau Izzat Rishq said.

      On late Tuesday, Israeli television reported that Egypt had proposed to impose a ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian militants starting from Thursday, adding that Hamas had already accepted the initiative.

      "The reports from the rival party that Hamas has agreed on the ceasefire starting from Thursday are not true ... No solution or timeframe for the cessation of hostilities has been agreed," Rishq wrote on his Twitter page.

    • 21:03

      Israeli Channel Kan Stops Broadcast of Eurovision Due to Rocket Fire Reports

    • 20:51

      IDF: 'Barrages of Rockets Are Being Fired' Towards Israel

      According to reports by Israeli media, barrages of rockets were fired toward multiple targets in Israel, including the cities of Ashdod, Ashkelon and the Shephelah.

    • 20:22

      Israel Not Requesting US Military Support in Gaza Operation, Pentagon Says

      WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Israel has not asked the US for any additional support for its operations against Palestinians amid the ongoing military conflict, the Defense Department spokesperson John Kirby said on Tuesday.

      “They [Israel] have not asked for any additional support. We continue to stand by Israel’s right to defend itself and its citizens. As you know, we have a strong bilateral military relationship with Israel and that has not changed as a result,” Kirby told reporters during a briefing.

      Kirby also underscored that during the telephone conversation with his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Gantz earlier in the day, the US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was clear that Washington did not want to see any additional innocent civilian lives lost on either side of the clash while supporting Israel’s right to defend itself.

    • 19:56

      Russia's Deputy FM Bogdanov Holds Phone Talks With Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine

      MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov on Tuesday discussed the situation in the Middle East in light of the renewed conflict between Israel and Palestine o a phone conversation with Maher Taher, a member of the political bureau of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

      The conversation is said to have taken place at the request of the Palestinian side.

      "During the conversation, they discussed the situation in the Middle East in relation to the ongoing escalation of the armed struggle between the Israelis and the Palestinians," the ministry said in a statement.

      The Russian side stressed the need for a swift ceasefire and prevention of further deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, as well as consolidated efforts by the Middle East Quartet.

    • 19:24

      Qatar Red Crescent to Continue Operations in Gaza Despite Office Bombing

      DOHA (Sputnik) - The Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) will continue to work in the Gaza Strip, despite the bombing of its building, and expects to provide humanitarian aid worth a million dollars, Faisal Al-Emadi, the executive director of international relief and development sector of QRCS, told Sputnik.

      "We in the Qatar Red Crescent pledge to continue our humanitarian projects to help our people in Palestine, and coordination is underway to implement a relief movement worth one million dollars to help the affected people in cooperation with the Palestinian Red Crescent," Al-Emadi said.

    • 19:21

      IDF Says Fighter Jets Attacked 'Hamas Terrorist Rocket Launch Sites' Throughout Gaza Strip

      "In the last few hours, fighter jets and aircraft have attacked six Hamas terrorist rocket launch sites throughout the Gaza Strip", IDF stated in its Twitter account on Tuesday.

    • 19:01

      Hamas Reportedly Agrees to Egypt's Proposal For Ceasefire With Israel, Starting Thursday

      Egypt has proposed an Israel-Hamas ceasefire that should enter into effect starting Thursday at 6 a.m., Israeli Channel 12 reported on Tuesday.

      According to the report, citing sources, Hamas has agreed to the proposal.

    • 18:00

      Hamas Wants West Bank Palestinians to Join Resistance Movement Against Israel, Member of Political Bureau Says

      DOHA, May 18 (Sputnik) - Palestine's Hamas movement, which controls the Gaza Strip, expects that Palestinians living in the West Bank will join its resistance movement against Israel, a member of the movement's political bureau, Husam Badran, said in an interview with Sputnik.

      On Sunday, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum told Sputnik that the movement could not rule out the possibility of armed resistance to Israeli authorities on the Palestinian territories of the West Bank. According to Barhum, an all-Palestinian rebellion in the West Bank is "just a matter of time."

      "The escalation has also affected the West Bank, there has accumulated experience associated with resistance to the occupation, and there is a noticeable development of the popular resistance movement in various parts of the West Bank, including an increase in the number of operations with the use of firearms, blade weapons, vehicles for ramming," Badran said.

      The political bureau member also said that the movement was interested in continuing the resistance in the West Bank so that it covered all groups of the Palestinian people, using all forms of struggle, "which is the duty and right of [the Palestinian] people."

      The current episode of the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict broke out last week on the border of Israel and the Gaza Strip. The violence sparked demonstrations in support for both Israel and Palestine across the world, with protesters calling on the international community to take urgent action.

    • 17:39

      IDF Bombed Red Crescent Building in Gaza Strip Without Warning, Organisation Says

      Qatar Red Crescent's sign

      IDF Bombed Qatar Red Crescent's Building in Gaza Strip Without Prior Notice, Organisation Says

      The IDF has been carrying out airstrikes against Hamas in the Gaza Strip ever since the militant group started launching hundreds of rockets into Israel from 10 May. During one of these retaliatory strikes, Israeli military levelled a multistorey building used by several international news agencies.
      Read more
    • 16:46

      IDF Shares Video As It Destroys Missile Launcher Used to Attack Beersheba

    • 15:51

      IDF Fighter Jets Attack Several Operational Apartments in Gaza Strip

    • 15:12

      Hamas Received No Truce Terms from Israel, Member of Hamas Politburo Says

      Hamas Did Not Receive Any Conditions for Truce From Israel, Politburo Member Says

      DOHA (Sputnik) - Palestinian movement Hamas did not receive any conditions from Israel for an armistice, Israel does not have the right to dictate them, a member of the movement's political bureau, Husam Badran, said in an interview with Sputnik.
      Read more
    • 15:02

      Palestinian Ambassador Urges Guterres to Immediately Issue Humanitarian Aid to Gaza, Envoy to UN Says

      UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) - Palestinian Ambassador to the United Nations Riyad Mansour on Tuesday called on UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to immediately issue emergency humanitarian assistance to Gaza.

      “We want from the Secretary-General to issue immediately an emergency humanitarian assistance to the tragedy that exists in the Gaza Strip,” Mansour said during the UN Forum on the Question of Palestine.

      Mansour said the assistance is urgent for more than 50,000 Palestinians who have already been displaced due to the ongoing violence

    • 14:52

      US Pentagon Chief 'Lamented Loss of Innocent Israeli, Palestinian Lives'

      Israeli security forces walk past extinguished burnt vehicles in Holon near Tel Aviv, on May 11, 2021, after rockets were launched towards Israel from the Gaza Strip controlled by the Palestinian Hamas movement

      US Pentagon Chief 'Lamented Loss of Innocent Israeli, Palestinian Lives'

      The Israeli-Palestinian conflict re-emerged after Hamas and Islamic Jihad militant groups recently launched hundreds of rockets at Israeli cities, including Tel Aviv. In response, the IDF conducted hundreds of airstrikes targeting the Gaza Strip, which killed 212 Palestinians including 61 children.
      Read more
    • 14:26

      US Republican Senators Introduce Resolution Reaffirming US Support for Israel

      WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US Senator Marco Rubio, alongside 17 fellow Senate Republicans, introduced a resolution that reaffirms the US’ support for the state of Israel amid escalating tensions in the region, Rubio’s office stated on Tuesday.

      “U.S. Senator Marco Rubio joined [his Senate colleagues]… in introducing a resolution condemning the attacks against Israel by Hamas, an Iranian-backed and funded terrorist organization, and reaffirming the United States’ unwavering commitment to our ally Israel and its right to take whatever means are necessary to stop the murder of its citizens and foreign nationals residing in Israel,” Rubio’s office said.

      The resolution is nonbinding; if passed, it would postulate that the Senate, on paper, opposes the escalating rocket attacks by Hamas against Israel and mourns the loss of innocent life caused by them, urges continued and steadfast support for Israel, and affirms its unwavering commitment to Israel and its right to defend itself.

    • 13:56

      Blinken Discusses Israel-Palestine Conflict With Bahraini, Moroccan Counterparts

      WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has discussed the ongoing escalation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with his Bahraini and Moroccan counterparts, State Department Spokesperson Ned Price said in two separate readouts on Tuesday.

      “Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke today with Bahraini Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Abdullatif bin Rashid al-Zayani,” Price said. “The Secretary and Foreign Minister discussed their outreach to halt the conflict in Israel and the West Bank and Gaza.”

      Price said in another press release that Blinken and Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita discussed their concerns about the violence in Israel and the West Bank and Gaza.

      “The Secretary highlighted the importance of the strong bilateral partnership and Morocco’s key role in fostering stability in the region,” he added.

      The two kingdoms are part of the Arab states that normalized relations with Israel in last year's detente, alongside the United Arab Emirates and Sudan.

      The Israel Defense Forces and the Palestinian militants in Gaza have exchanged fire for more than a week. The increase in violence, the worst in years, has killed 10 people in Israel and 220 in Gaza, almost a quarter of them children.

    • 13:21

      Live From Sheikh Jarrah as Palestinians Protest Against Israeli Actions in Region

    • 12:09

      Hamas Attacks Erez Crossing as Israel Re-Opens it to Allow Entry of Civilian Aid, IDF Reports

    • 11:45

      Blinken Says US Seeks to End Violence Between Israelis and Palestinians as Soon as Possible

      U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks during a news conference following meetings at the Danish Foreign Ministry in Copenhagen, Denmark, May 17, 2021. Saul Loeb/Pool via REUTERS

      Blinken Says US Seeks to End Violence Between Israelis and Palestinians as Soon as Possible

      A new spate of violence erupted last week between Tel Aviv and militant groups based in the Gaza Strip over policies enacted by the Israeli government pertaining to Palestinians. Over the week, Hamas and Islamic Jihad have fired over 3,000 rockets towards Israel, with the IDF hitting numerous Hamas facilities and killing some of its top commanders.
      Read more
    • 11:44

      Situation in Bethlehem Amid Escalating Violence Between Israelis and Palestinians

    • 11:02

      Air Raid Sirens Sound in Southern Israel, IDF Warns of Rocket Attack

    • 10:24

      Situation in Gaza as Israeli-Hamas Crisis Enters Second Week

      A Palestinian man takes a photograph with his mobile phone of a building hit and destroyed during an Israeli Air strike in Gaza City, on May 15, 2021.

      Situation in Gaza as Israeli-Hamas Crisis Enters Second Week

      According to the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), at least 3,300 rockets have been fired from the Gaza Strip amid the recent escalation, while the Israeli military has targeted Hamas infrastructure and militants.
      Read more
    • 09:57

      Israeli Jets Strike Nine Underground Rocket Launchers in Gaza, IDF Says

      "As of 8:00 a.m., IDF fighter jets have identified and attacked 9 underground surface-to-surface rocket launchers across the Gaza Strip", the tweet says.

    • 09:39

      IDF Says It Attacked 12 Hamas Leaders' Houses in Gaza

      "The IDF has attacked 12 senior Hamas commanders' houses in the Gaza Strip in the past 24 hours", an official tweet from the military says.

    • 09:08

      Alarm System Sounds Over Southern Israel Again for Second Time in 6 Hours

    • 08:32

      Protests in Ramallah Amid Rising Tensions in Israel

      YouTube https://www.youtube.com
    • 08:02

      Biden Voices Support for Israel-Hamas Ceasefire…Again

      A man stands near a burning sponge factory after it was hit by Israeli artillery shells, according to witnesses, in the northern Gaza Strip May 17, 2021

      Biden Voices Support for Israel-Hamas Ceasefire…Again

      On Sunday, Israeli Ambassador to the US Gilad Erdan expressed gratitude to President Joe Biden for issuing a "strong message of support" for the Jewish state in its response to Hamas rocket attacks from Gaza.
      Read more
    • 07:04

      Third of Israelis Have No Access to Bomb Shelters, Living in Fear of Rocket Launches

      Third of Israelis Have No Access to Bomb Shelters, Living in Fear of Rocket Launches

      Israel invests billions of dollars in security, but the construction of bomb shelters doesn't appear to be on top of the country's agenda, and reports suggest that a third of the Jewish state's population lacks basic protection from missiles emanating from Gaza or Hezbollah in the north.
      Read more
    • 06:37

      IDF Says It's Downed Drone Near Jordanian Border

      "Early in the morning, a UAV that was approaching the border near the Springs Valley was identified and shot down. The UAV was monitored by air control units. The UAV fragments were collected by the security forces", a tweet from the military says.

    • 06:11

      IDF Reports Hitting 65 Hamas Targets, Striking Tunnel System

    • 05:26

      Air Raid Sirens Sound in Southern Israel

    Live Updates: Israeli Jets Strike Nine Underground Rocket Launchers in Gaza, IDF Says
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