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Israel Bombs Gaza, Lebanon Overnight; PM Netanyahu Convenes War Cabinet

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called a meeting of his war cabinet and senior generals to discuss the worsening violence while his country launched airstrikes on Gaza early on Monday and hit southern Lebanon overnight.

Palestinian media stated that Israel’s attacks were concentrated on the north and central of the Gaza Strip. Media sources state that multiple Palestinians were killed and numerous others were injured in an attack on a home close to the Jabalia refugee camp in northern Gaza.

The Palestinian health ministry announced on Monday that two Palestinians had died in the Jalazone refugee camp, which is close to Ramallah in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

According to the locals, they fought with gunmen and several young people who threw stones, Israeli troops entered the camp and made numerous arrests. The army of Israel has not come in open about the incident.

After a two-week bombing by Israel, which started on October 7, following a Hamas onslaught against southern Israeli villages that resulted in 1,400 deaths and 212 captives being carried into Gaza, health officials in Gaza said that at least 4,600 people had died.

Hamas released a statement after Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and Palestinian Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh spoke over the phone late on Sunday on how to put an end to Israel’s “brutal crimes” in Gaza.

In preparation for a planned ground assault intended to destroy Hamas, Israel has gathered tanks and personnel close to the walled border around Gaza.

Washington’s warning of a serious risk to US interests in the area over the weekend heightened fears that the Israel-Hamas battle may turn into a larger Middle East conflict.

In an effort to thwart strikes by forces connected to Iran, the Pentagon has already sent a sizable contingent of naval forces—two aircraft carriers, support ships, and some 2,000 Marines—to the Middle East.

According to US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin, “what we’re seeing… is the prospect of a significant escalation of attacks on our troops and our people throughout the region,” the interview was conducted on Sunday with ABC’s “This Week” show.

Chinese state media reported on Monday that Zhai Jun, China’s special envoy to the Middle East, had issued a warning, citing the increasing likelihood of a large-scale ground confrontation and the “worrisome” nature of spillover conflicts in the area.

Israeli missiles struck Aleppo and Damascus international airports early on Sunday, causing both to close and killing two workers, according to Syrian state media. Syria is a neighbouring country where Hamas’ principal regional supporter, Iran, has a military presence.

In the biggest surge in border violence since the Israel-Hezbollah war of 2006, Israeli soldiers have fought with the Iran-backed Hezbollah militia in support of Hamas along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon.

Israeli military reported that early on Monday, Israeli aircraft hit two Hezbollah cells in Lebanon that were preparing to fire rockets and anti-tank missiles against Israel. The Israeli military reported hitting an observation post and a compound, among other Hezbollah posts.

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