‘No place that is safe in Gaza right now,’ UN says; Israeli protestors call on Netanyahu to resign


President Biden hints at progress on persuading Israel to pause attacks

U.S. President Joe Biden holds an event about American retirement economics in the State Dining Room at the White House in Washington, October 31, 2023.

Leah Millis | Reuters

President Joe Biden suggested Saturday there have been some advances in U.S. attempts to persuade Israel to pause military strikes on Gaza for humanitarian reasons.

In a brief exchange with reporters as he left St. Edmond Roman Catholic Church in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, Biden was asked if there was progress, and he responded, “Yes,” but did not share specifics.

This comes after U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with his Arab counterparts Saturday. He disagreed with them on the need for an immediate cease-fire and made clear the furthest he would go was backing a pause for aid to reach civilians in Gaza. Blinken said a cease-fire would leave Hamas in place.

Associated Press

Israeli forces have encircled Gaza City. Here’s what we know about its ground assault.

An IDF soldier jumps off the front of a tank on Oct. 21, 2023, in southern Israel.

Alexi J. Rosenfeld | Getty Images News | Getty Images

The Israeli Defense Forces, or IDF, has surrounded the densely populated city of Gaza, a handful of weeks following the Oct. 7 Hamas terror attacks.

The ongoing IDF campaign has been shrouded in mystery, here’s what we know about its ground assault in Gaza.

Read the full story on NBC News.

— Amanda Macias

Families and supporters of hostages in Gaza call for their release ‘now’

People hold pictures as they demand the immediate release of hostages held in Gaza who were seized in the October attack by Hamas gunmen, in Tel Aviv, Israel, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Evelyn Hockstein | Reuters

Thousands of people have joined a demonstration in Tel Aviv organized by families of some 240 hostages being held in the Gaza Strip.

“Now!” the crowd chanted repeatedly, calling for hostages to be freed without delay after nearly a month in captivity. Many held pictures of the hostages, including photos of children and older people.

Hadas Kalderon of Kibbutz Nir Oz whose two children, ages 16 and 12, were kidnapped called for a cease-fire in exchange for the return of the hostages.

Hamas militants abducted the hostages in an Oct. 7 cross-border raid that triggered the latest Israel-Hamas war. The plight of the hostages and their families has captured the nation’s attention.

Ella Ben-Ami, a 23-year-old Israeli whose parents were abducted, said she held Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responsible.

She called for a halt in all humanitarian aid to Gaza until the hostages are freed.

Associated Press

Thousands of protestors demonstrate in London, other major cities for fourth straight weekend

Huge crowds of demonstrators gathered around the world on Saturday in pro-Palestinian protests.

In Washington D.C., and New York, tens of thousands of protestors also joined together, some calling on the U.S. government to stop sending military aid to Israel and demanding a ceasefire. And for the fourth weekend in a row, major cities in Europe saw droves of protestors who also called for an end to the war.

London

Demonstrators take part in a sit-down protest in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in London, Britain, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Toby Melville | Reuters

Germany

A police officer gestures after protesters climb on the Neptune Fountain during a pro-Palestinian demonstration, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Berlin, Germany, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Liesa Johannssen | Reuters

France

People attend a demonstration demanding a ceasefire in Gaza, an end to airstrikes and an end to ‘forcible displacement of populations’, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Paris, France, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Claudia Greco | Reuters

Norway

People attend a demonstration in support of Gaza and Palestinians, organised by the Palestine Committee, near the Royal Palace and the building of the Norwegian parliament, Stortinget, in Oslo, Norway, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Ntb | Via Reuters

Romania

People attend a rally in support of Palestinians in Gaza, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Bucharest, Romania, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Andreea Campeanu | Reuters

Ireland

People take part in a rally in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Clodagh Kilcoyne | Reuters

Gaza receives 30 humanitarian aid trucks

Thirty trucks with humanitarian aid entered Gaza via the Rafah border crossing on Saturday, according to NBC News.

The trucks were first delivered to the Palestine Red Crescent. Some were later handed off to the International Committee of the Red Cross and the UNRWA. Four of the trucks contain medical supplies, while the others hold food, water and other relief.

Saturday’s wave of trucks roughly matches the pace of aid sent since the Rafah crossing opened up for convoys. Since Oct. 21, there have been 451 total convoys sent to Gaza, or about 30 trucks per day.

Rebecca Picciotto

Israeli protestors call on Netanyahu to resign

Protestors gather against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu near his residence, as the conflict between Israel and Palestinian Islamist group Hamas continues, in Jerusalem, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Ammar Awad | Reuters

Thousands of Israelis are protesting outside Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s official residence in central Jerusalem, calling on the Israeli leader to resign in the wake of the bloody Oct. 7 Hamas rampage that sparked the latest Israel-Hamas war.

Netanyahu has so far refused to take responsibility for the Oct. 7 attack, in which several thousand Hamas militants burst into Israel and killed over 1,400 people and took some 240 hostages back to Gaza. He says officials, including himself, will have to give answers to the public, but only after the war.

Israel has carried out weeks of airstrikes and launched a ground offensive in Gaza, with Palestinian health officials saying over 9,000 people were killed in the fighting.

During Saturday night’s protest, demonstrators called on Netanyahu to step down and called for the return of the hostages. They also held a moment of silence for victims of the attack and those in captivity.

“Where were you in Kfar Azza,” chanted the protesters, referring to one of the Israeli border communities that was overrun by Hamas.

“I came here to rescue the country,” said Nava Hefetz, a rabbi and human rights activist, who attended the protest.

Associated Press

Blinken rebuffs calls for ceasefire from Jordan, Egypt officials

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry and Jordanian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi hold a press conference, after meetings about the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Amman, Jordan, November 4, 2023. 

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Saturday publicly disagreed with foreign ministers from Egypt and Jordan on their demands for a ceasefire in Gaza.

That stance was in stark contrast with Egyptian foreign minister Sameh Shoukry and Jordanian foreign minister Ayman Safadi, both of whom called for an immediate cessation of attacks.

Directly addressing Blinken, Safadi said in his opening remarks that the U.S. has a leading role to play in “ending this catastrophe.”

Shoukry said, “It is our position that a ceasefire is imperative to deal with the humanitarian consequences of this conflict.”

Standing beside Shoukry and Safadi at the joint press conference, Blinken said that it was not the right time for Israel to suspend its action. He said that Israel has an “obligation” to defend itself, though “the way Israel does that” is important.

“A ceasefire now would simply leave Hamas in place, able to regroup and repeat what it did on Oct. 7,” said Blinken.

The three officials agreed that protecting civilian lives and supplying sustainable humanitarian aid to Gaza should be priorities.

Rebecca Picciotto

Blinken adds Turkey to his Middle East trip

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken talks onboard the plane during his visit to Israel as he departs en route to Jordan, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Tel Aviv, Israel November 3, 2023. 

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

Secretary of State Antony Blinken will include Turkey in his trip to the Middle East, as relations between the country and and Israel deteriorate.

Turkey on Saturday recalled its ambassador to Israel because of the situation in Gaza and Israel’s refusal to call a ceasefire. Israel had already ordered its own ambassadors in Turkey to return home.

Blinken, who met with Arab leaders in Jordan today, will travel on to Ankara before making his way to Tokyo, Seoul and New Delhi.

Turkey has become more critical of Israel over the course of the war. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said that Hamas is not a terror organization, though the U.S., the U.K., the European Union, Canada and many other countries have designated it to be one.

— Annie Nova

Egypt, Lebanon urge efforts to contain the situation, relaunch peace talks

The Lebanese and Egyptian leaders urged the international community to intensify efforts to “contain the situation and avert expanding the scope of violence.”

Lebanese caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati flew to Cairo on Saturday for talks with President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi of Egypt, after his meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in the Jordanian capital of Amman.

According to a statement from el-Sissi’s office, they also affirmed the necessity of “relaunching the peace track and implement the state-state solution principle to achieve justice, security and stability to the region’s peoples.”

Associated Press

United Nations workers prepare aid for distribution to Palestinians in the Nuseirat refugee camp

United Nations workers prepare aid for distribution to Palestinians, who have fled their homes due to Israeli strikes and take shelter in a UN-run school, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on Nov. 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement.

United Nations workers prepare aid for distribution to Palestinians, who have fled their homes due to Israeli strikes and take shelter in a UN-run school, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on November 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement. (Photo by Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Majdi Fathi | Nurphoto | Getty Images

United Nations workers prepare aid for distribution to Palestinians, who have fled their homes due to Israeli strikes and take shelter in a UN-run school, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on November 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement. (Photo by Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Majdi Fathi | Nurphoto | Getty Images

United Nations workers prepare aid for distribution to Palestinians, who have fled their homes due to Israeli strikes and take shelter in a UN-run school, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on November 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement. (Photo by Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Majdi Fathi | Nurphoto | Getty Images

United Nations workers prepare aid for distribution to Palestinians, who have fled their homes due to Israeli strikes and take shelter in a UN-run school, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on November 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement. (Photo by Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Majdi Fathi | Nurphoto | Getty Images

WHO director general calls for ceasefire in Gaza following reports of deadly ambulance attack

World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a press conference organised by the Geneva Association of United Nations Correspondents (ACANU) amid the COVID-19 outbreak, caused by the novel coronavirus, on July 3, 2020 at the WHO headquarters in Geneva.

Fabrice Coffrini | AFP | Getty Images

The director general of the World Health Organization on Friday called for a ceasefire in Gaza following reports of an IDF attack on an ambulance convoy that killed at least 15 people.

“Utterly shocked by reports of attacks on ambulances evacuating patients close to Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza, leading to deaths, injuries and damage,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus posted on X, the social media service formerly known as Twitter.

The deadly Gaza City strike destroyed an ambulance that Israel’s military said was being “used by a Hamas terrorist cell.” The Israel Defence Forces reported that a “number of Hamas terrorist operatives were killed in the strike.”

Dozens were injured in addition to the 15 people who were killed.

“We reiterate: patients, health workers, facilities, and ambulances must be protected at all times. Always,” Tedros wrote, adding: “Ceasefire NOW.”

Nicolas Vega

Turkey recalls its ambassador to Israel due to ceasefire ‘refusal’

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan gives a press conference during the NATO Summit in Vilnius on July 12, 2023.

Ludovic Marin | AFP | Getty Images

Turkey is bringing its ambassador in Tel Aviv back to its capital city of Ankara due to Israel’s refusal to call a ceasefire.

Ambassador Şakir Özkan Torunlar has been ordered back to Turkey “in view of the unfolding humanitarian tragedy in Gaza caused by the continuing attacks by Israel against civilians, and Israel’s refusal of calls for ceasefire and continuous and unhindered flow of humanitarian aid,” the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement on Saturday.

Last Saturday, Israel ordered its own ambassadors in Turkey to return home.

Israel’s foreign minister Eli Cohen said the move was a result of Turkey’s “harsh statements” and that he would “conduct a reassessment of Israel-Turkey relations.”

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has publicly voiced support for Hamas, saying it is “not a terrorist organization, but a group of liberation.” He has also criticized Israel’s actions in the war and called for a ceasefire.

Rebecca Picciotto

French Air Force load plane carrying humanitarian aid for Gaza

Humanitarian aid that is set to be delivered for Gaza is loaded on a French Air Force army plane before take-off from the Orleans Air Base, France, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Humanitarian aid to be delivered for Gaza is loaded on a French Air Force army plane before take-off from at Orleans Air Base, France, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Clotaire Achi | Reuters

Humanitarian aid to be delivered for Gaza is loaded on a French Air Force army plane before take-off from at Orleans Air Base, France, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Clotaire Achi | Reuters

Humanitarian aid to be delivered for Gaza is loaded on a French Air Force army plane before take-off from at Orleans Air Base, France, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Clotaire Achi | Reuters

A French Air Force Airbus A400M army plane is seen before take-off to deviver humanitarian aid for Gaza, at Orleans Air Base, France, on Nov. 4, 2023.

Clotaire Achi | Reuters

U.S. special envoy says there have not been reports of Hamas interfering with aid

People reload fallen boxes onto a truck carrying humanitarian aid that entered the southern Gaza Strip from Egypt via the Rafah border crossing on November 2, 2023, as battles between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement continue. 

Mohammed Abed | Afp | Getty Images

U.S. Special Envoy David Satterfield said on Saturday that U.S. officials had not been told that Hamas is blocking or diverting humanitarian aid flowing into the Gaza Strip amid shortages of food, medicine and fuel.

Speaking to reporters in the Jordanian capital Amman, he said that those distributing aid in Gaza had not reported aid being diverted since trucks resumed crossing the Egypt-controlled Rafah gate on Oct. 21 after diplomatic wrangling to resume the flow.

Those in charge of the aid “do not report to us in this 10 day, 12 day period of assistance delivery, interdiction of or seizure of goods by Hamas,” he said.

Between 800,000 to a million people have moved to the south of the Gaza Strip, while 350,000-400,000 remain in the north of the enclave, Satterfield said.

Reuters

Palestinians in Gaza are struggling to find food

Civilians wait in front of a partially collapsed, still operational bakehouse in Nuseirat refugee camp in Deir al Balah, Gaza on November 04, 2023. The bakehouse, which is the only bakehouse in the camp, hit by Israeli forces. 

Ashraf Amra | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Palestinians in besieged Gaza say it has become increasingly difficult to find food as supermarkets shelves empty faster than the trickle of trucks carrying humanitarian aid through the southern Rafah crossing can distribute.

A rising number of bakeries have also stopped operating due to fuel and water shortages, as well as airstrike damage.

Civilians wait in front of a partially collapsed, still operational bakehouse in Nuseirat refugee camp in Deir al Balah, Gaza on November 04, 2023. The bakehouse, which is the only bakehouse in the camp, hit by Israeli forces. 

Ashraf Amra | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Residents and officials have also complained that there’s not enough food coming through Rafah and much of it has already expired or will expire before it can reach people in need.

Wael Abu Omar, a spokesperson for the Rafah crossing, said that in recent days the trucks have contained far more body bags than canned food. He claimed that recently delivered biscuits had already expired and were inedible.

People queue for bread in front of a bakery that was partially destroyed in an Israeli strike, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on November 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement. 

Majdi Fathi | Nurphoto | Getty Images

Lynn Hastings, a senior U.N. official based in Jerusalem, said she was aware of the reports of expired food but could not independently confirm them as the World Food Program’s food shipments of date bars wouldn’t expire for another month.

The WFP has warned that widespread food insecurity across Gaza was quickly becoming a serious crisis.

“There is a real threat of malnutrition and people starving,” said Alia Zaki, a spokesperson for the WFP. “There is some food that’s still available but people can’t reach it. The situation is catastrophic.”

People carry bags of bread as others queue in front of a bakery that was partially destroyed in an Israeli strike, in the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, on November 4, 2023, as battles continue between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement.

Majdi Fathi | Nurphoto | Getty Images

Hamas leader’s home is hit in airstrike as Israel presses its attacks

Israel’s military hit the family home of the exiled leader of Hamas on the outskirts of Gaza City with an airstrike Saturday and pressed ahead with attacks across the besieged enclave where a humanitarian crisis is rapidly worsening.

Hamas’ political bureau chief Ismail Haniyeh addresses supporters during a rally in solidarity with the Palestinians outside Qatar’s Imam Muhammad Abdel-Wahhab Mosque in the capital Doha on May 15, 2021.

Karim Jaafar | AFP | Getty Images

The family home of Hamas’ exiled leader Ismail Haniyeh, in the Shati refugee camp on the northern edge of Gaza City, was hit Saturday morning by an airstrike, according to the Hamas-run media office in Gaza. It had no immediate details on damage or casualties and there was no immediate comment.

Senior Hamas official Ghazi Hamad told The Associated Press that the house was being used by Haniyeh’s two sons.

The home is located in a narrow alley in the refugee camp, which has become a crowded neighborhood of Gaza City over the generations. Haniyeh, a former aide to Hamas’ founder, Ahmed Yassin, who was killed in an Israeli airstrike in 2004, has been in exile since 2019.

Overnight strikes also hit the western outskirts of the city and near Al-Quds Hospital.

Associated Press

French death toll from Hamas attacks in Israel up to 39

Palestinian Red Crescent condemns strike on Gaza ambulance

The Palestinian Red Crescent Society condemned an Israeli attack on a convoy of five ambulances in Gaza on Friday.

In a statement posted on X early Saturday, the PRCS said one of its ambulances, travelling in a convoy to the Rafah border crossing, was hit “by a missile fired by the Israeli forces” two meters from the entrance to al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City.

People gather around an ambulance damaged in a reported Israeli strike in front of Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City on November 3, 2023, as battles between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement continue.

Momen Al-halabi | AFP | Getty Images

The attack resulted in the deaths of 15 civilians and wounded 60 other people, the PRCS said, echoing figures released earlier by the Palestinian health ministry in Gaza, which is run by Hamas.

Another ambulance in the convoy was “directly targeted” by a missile about a kilometer from the hospital, the PRCS said, damaging the vehicle, its crew and the injured inside.

The PRCS, part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, added that deliberately targeting medical teams constituted “a grave violation of the Geneva conventions, a war crime.”

Israel’s military said it had launched an airstrike on “an ambulance that was identified by forces as being used by a Hamas terrorist cell in close proximity to their position in the battle zone”.

“A number of Hamas terrorist operatives were killed in the strike,” it said on Telegram. CNBC was unable to verify the comments.

— Holly Ellyatt

UK urges Iran to use influence to prevent escalation of Israel-Hamas conflict

British foreign minister James Cleverly has urged Iran to use its influence with groups in the Middle East region to prevent an escalation of Israel’s conflict with Hamas.

Britain’s Foreign Office said Cleverly spoke to Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian on Friday, telling him “Iran bore responsibility” for the actions of groups, such as Hamas and Hezbollah, that it has supported for many years.

Children wait for the arrival of Palestinian workers, who were in Israel during the Hamas October 7 attack, at the Rafah border after being sent back by Israel to the strip, in the southern Gaza Strip, November 3, 2023.

Ibraheem Abu Mustafa | Reuters

Cleverly also reiterated that Iranian-backed threats against people in the United Kingdom were unacceptable and must stop, a Foreign Office spokesperson said.

Britain has supported Israel’s right to defend itself after an Oct. 7 attack by militant group Hamas that Israel said had killed 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and saw over 200 others kidnapped.

— Reuters

Israel resists U.S.’ calls to pause the war

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) meets with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netenyahu (R) in Tel Aviv, Israel on November 03, 2023. 

Amos Ben-Gershom | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Israel continues to reject U.S. calls for a pause in the fighting to allow more aid into Gaza, saying there would be no temporary cease-fire until an estimated 240 hostages held by militant group Hamas are released.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday with the U.S.’ top diplomat reiterating President Joe Biden’s calls for a brief halt in the fighting to address the deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip.

Netanyahu resisted U.S. pressure, issuing a televised statement after his meeting with Blinken in which he said: “I made clear that we are continuing full force and that Israel refuses a temporary ceasefire which does not include the release of our hostages,” Reuters reported.

More than 9,200 people have been killed in Gaza since the conflict began, according to the Palestinian health ministry in Gaza, which is run by Hamas. Israel said that over 1,400 Israelis have been killed — the majority in the Hamas terror attack on Oct. 7.

Blinken is expected to meet with leaders and officials of Arab nations Saturday, including Jordan’s King Abdullah II.

— Holly Ellyatt

‘There is no place that is safe in Gaza right now,’ UN says

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) warned Friday that even a UN flag cannot provide safety or protection to hundreds of thousands of Palestinians trapped in the Gaza Strip.

“Let’s be very clear, there is no place that is safe in Gaza right now,” Thomas White, the director of UNRWA affairs, said on Friday, describing the enclave as “a scene of death and destruction.”

A view of destroyed area after the Israeli attacks on the Nasirat Refugee Camp that continues on its 28th day in Gaza City, Gaza on November 3, 2023.

Doaa Albaz | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Although people are sheltering under the UN flag, “the reality is we cannot even provide them safety under a UN flag,” he said, speaking from the UN agency’s Rafah logistics base.

“We’ve had over 50 of our facilities that have been impacted by the conflict, including five direct hits. I think at last count 38 people have died in our shelters. I fear that with the fighting going on in the north right now, that number is going to grow significantly,” he added.  

UNRWA, the UN agency assisting Palestinian refugees, said Friday that more than 1.5 million people are now displaced and nearly 600,000 are crowded in shelters run by the agency.

UNRWA has itself lost 72 staff members during the conflict. White believed this marked the highest loss ever of UN staff in conflict. 

— Holly Ellyatt

Israel deports thousands of Palestinian workers back to Gaza’s war zone

Thousands of Palestinian workers deported by Israel return to the Gaza Strip in Rafah, Gaza on November 03, 2023. 

Abed Rahim Khatib | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

Some workers, streaming by foot through an Israeli crossing that had been sealed shut since Hamas unleashed its brutal attack on southern Israel Oct. 7, told of violent mistreatment by Israeli authorities in detention centers. The Israeli military did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the allegations.

“We sacrificed and they treated us like livestock over there,” one of the workers, Wael al-Sajda, said from the border, pointing to his ankle fitted with an identification bracelet.

Al-Sajda was among the roughly 18,000 Palestinians from Gaza allowed to work in menial jobs in Israel. The permits have been coveted in Gaza, which has an unemployment rate approaching 50%. Israel began issuing the permits in recent years, a measure it thought helped stabilize Gaza and moderate Hamas, despite a broader blockade aimed at weakening the Islamic militant group.

Late Thursday, Israel announced it was revoking the workers’ permits and would deport them.

 — Associated Press

Palestine Red Crescent receives 47 humanitarian aid trucks

Trucks carrying aid enter through the Rafah crossing on November 2, 2023 in Rafah, Gaza.

Ahmad Hasaballah | Getty Images

The humanitarian group Palestine Red Crescent Society said it received 47 humanitarian aid trucks Friday from the Egyptian Red Crescent across the Rafah border crossing.

The trucks delivered water, blankets, medical supplies, food, tents and mattresses. The group said that it has so far received 421 trucks, but noted fuel is still not allowed into Gaza.

— Christine Wang

17 injured Palestinians arrive in Egypt

Egypt received and treated 17 injured Palestinians, out of the 28 who were expected to arrive, a spokesman for the Egyptian Ministry of Health told NBC News.

Security guards check an Egyptian ambulance carrying critically injured Palestinians as they arrive at Al-Arish hospital through the Rafah border crossing, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas in the city of Al-Arish, Sinai Peninsula, Egypt November 1, 2023. 

Stringer | Reuters

In its summary of the third day of entry for injured and foreign nationals, the ministry said 11 of the expected, injured Palestinians did not arrive due to unspecified “events in Gaza.”

Egypt said it conducted medical exams on 448 foreign nationals received, including 96 children who received vaccines.

— Christine Wang, NBC News 

UN agencies warn women and children bearing brunt of conflict in Gaza

Women, children and newborns have been disproportionately affected by the conflict in the Gaza Strip, both as casualties and in reduced access to health care, U.N. agencies warned.

As of Friday, at least 2,300 women and 3,700 children have been killed in the territory accounting for 67% of all casualties while thousands more have been injured, the statement said, citing health ministry data.

The joint statement was issued by the World Health Organization, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and  the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).

The agencies warned that bombardments have further reduced health-care access in Gaza and could lead to more deaths. They estimated that over half of the population in Gaza is now sheltering at UNRWA facilities with limited water and food supplies.

“An immediate humanitarian pause is needed to alleviate the suffering and prevent a desperate situation from becoming catastrophic,” the agencies said.

— Christine Wang

Blinken arrives in Jordan, will meet with King Abdullah II and others on Saturday

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken disembarks at the airport during his visit to Jordan after arriving from Israel, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Amman, Jordan November 3, 2023. 

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has arrived in Jordan to continue his latest diplomatic mission to increase humanitarian aid deliveries into Gaza and prevent Palestinian civilian casualties as Israel intensifies its war against Hamas.

Blinken, whose call for Israel to temporarily pause some military operations to allow assistance in and foreign nationals out appeared to be rejected by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu after they met in Tel Aviv earlier Friday, will meet Jordan’s King Abdullah II and the foreign ministers of Jordan and perhaps other Arab nations on Saturday.

Earlier this week, Jordan recalled its ambassador to Israel and told Israel’s envoy not to return to Amman at least until conditions in Gaza have improved, further complicating Blinken’s efforts.

In addition to aid distribution, allowing foreigners out of Gaza and securing the release of hostages held by Hamas, Blinken is looking to persuade Jordan and other Arab states to begin thinking about the future of Gaza — if and when Israel succeeds at eradicating Hamas.

Associated Press

Gaza health officials say 15 people were killed in an Israeli air strike on an ambulance

People gather around an ambulance damaged in a reported Israeli strike in front of Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City on November 3, 2023, as battles between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement continue.

Momen Al-halabi | AFP | Getty Images

An Israeli air strike on an ambulance being used to evacuate the wounded from besieged northern Gaza killed 15 people and injured 60 others on Friday, the Hamas-controlled enclave’s health ministry said.

Israel’s military said it had identified and hit an ambulance “being used by a Hamas terrorist cell”. It said Hamas fighters were killed in the strike, and accused the group of transferring militants and weapons in ambulances.

Hamas official Izzat El Reshiq said allegations its fighters were present were “baseless”. Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesperson for Gaza’s health ministry, said the ambulance was part of a convoy that Israel targeted near Gaza City’s al-Shifa Hospital.

Qidra said Israel had targeted the convoy of ambulances in more than one location, including at al-Shifa Hospital gate and at Ansar Square a kilometer (0.6 miles) away.

In a statement on the incident, Israel’s military gave no evidence to support its assertion that the ambulance was linked to Hamas but said it intended to release additional information.

“We emphasize that this area is a battle zone. Civilians in the area are repeatedly called upon to evacuate southwards for their own safety,” the military said.

Reuters was unable to independently verify either side’s account.

Video shared on social media, which Reuters has verified, showed people lying in blood next to an ambulance with flashing lights on a city street as people rushed to help.

Another video showed three ambulances standing in a line, with about a dozen people lying either motionless or barely moving next to them. Blood was pooled nearby.

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a social media post he was “utterly shocked by reports of attacks on ambulances evacuating patients”, adding that patients, health workers and medical facilities must be protected.

Reuters

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