Shafaq News/ Intense fighting broke out in Gaza on Friday as Israel's military announced the resumption of combat operations against Hamas. The move followed Israel's accusation that the Palestinian militant group had violated a temporary truce by firing towards Israeli territory.
Palestinian media reported renewed Israeli air and artillery strikes across the Gaza Strip, including in Rafah near the border with Egypt and the southern region.
The new Israeli strikes in various parts of Gaza are described as the most violent in recent times.
The humanitarian truce in the Gaza Strip ended on Friday morning, concluding a week of efforts to exchange prisoners and detainees between Israel and the Hamas movement.
The Qatari, Egyptian, and American-mediated truce, which lasted for a whole week, involved multiple rounds of releases. According to media reports, despite attempts to extend the truce to an eighth day, both parties opted to conclude the humanitarian pause.
The final exchange on Thursday involved 10 Israelis for the release of 30 Palestinians, comprising eight female prisoners and 22 children. The last aid and fuel convoy also entered the besieged Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing on the same day.
However, the end of the truce marked a resumption of hostilities, with Israeli warplanes reportedly launching a series of airstrikes targeting various areas in the Gaza Strip, including the southern region.
This recent truce saw a total of 83 Israelis, including dual nationals, released along with 24 hostages, primarily Thais and one Filipino. Israel has reported that approximately 125 men are still held hostage.
As the conflict persists, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed hope for an extension of the cease-fire and the release of more hostages during his visit to the region. Blinken emphasized that if Israel resumes military operations, it must adhere to international humanitarian law and have a clear plan to protect civilians.
The toll from the Gaza conflict, according to the Health Ministry in Hamas-ruled Gaza, includes over 15,000 Palestinians, while Israel reports 77 soldiers killed in the ground offensive.
Hamas leadership said that it killed more Israeli soldiers than the Israeli authorities announced.