A picture taken from Israel's southern city of Sderot shows smoke billowing during an Israeli strike on Gaza on October 22, 2023. Image Credit: AFP

Scores of Palestinians were killed in central Gaza on Sunday after Israel stepped up its strikes on the war-torn enclave and another convoy of 17 aid trucks arrived as the Hamas-run territory faces "catastrophic" shortages.

With the violence raging unchecked, Iran said the region could spiral "out of control" and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a stark warning to Lebanon's Hezbollah, saying getting involved would be "the mistake of its life". But Washington also fired a shot across the bows of any actors looking to inflame the conflict, saying it wouldn't hesitate to act in the event of any "escalation".

Hamas militants stormed across the border into Israel on October 7, launching a raid that killed at least 1,400 people, mostly civilians who were shot, mutilated or burnt to death on the first day, according to Israeli officials. They also seized more than 200 hostages in the worst-ever attack in Israel's history. Israel has hit back with a relentless bombing campaign which has so far killed more than 4,600 Palestinians, mainly civilians, according to Gaza's health ministry, with officials saying the central town of Deir al-Balah had been particularly badly hit overnight.

Follow the latest updates on Israel-Hamas war:

Biden discusses Israel-Hamas war with leaders of UK, Canada, France, Germany and Italy: White House

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Smoke billows after an Israeli strike on Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip. Image Credit: AFP

Israel 'accidentally' hit Egyptian position: military

The Israeli military said Sunday it "accidentally fired and hit an Egyptian post" with a tank, near the border with Gaza, as the army bombards the Palestinian enclave.

"The IDF (Israeli military) expresses sorrow regarding the incident" near the Kerem Shalom area, an army statement said.

Rare fuel delivery enters Gaza, Israel steps up strikes

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Trucks carrying aid enter the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing with Egypt on October 22, 2023. Image Credit: AFP

An aid convoy carrying desperately needed fuel entered Gaza on Sunday as Israel intensified strikes on the Palestinian enclave suffering a "catastrophic" humanitarian situation in the war sparked by Hamas's bloody attack.

With fears of a wider conflagration mounting, Iran said the region could spiral "out of control" and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Lebanon's Hezbollah that an intervention would be "the mistake of its life".

17-truck aid delivery through Gaza's Rafah border

Sunday's 17-truck aid delivery through Gaza's Rafah border crossing with Egypt was the second such operation in two days, after 20 lorries arrived on Saturday following negotiations and US pressure.

An AFP journalist saw six trucks enter from stores in the crossing. A Palestinian official at the crossing confirmed the trucks were carrying fuel.

Israel worries that Hamas could use fuel brought into Gaza to manufacture weapons and explosives.

The United Nations estimates that about 100 trucks per day are required to meet the needs of 2.4 million Gazans given the "catastrophic" humanitarian situation.

The head of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees warned fuel supplies would run out in three days.

Hezbollah war with Israel would be 'mistake of its life': Netanyahu

Hezbollah will make "the mistake of its life" if it starts a war with Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday.

The Lebanese movement "will make the mistake of its life. We will strike it with a force it cannot even imagine, and the significance for it and the state of Lebanon will be devastating," Netanyahu said on a visit to troops in northern Israel near the Lebanon border.

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A Palestinian woman looks out of her window after an Israeli strike on the Gaza Strip in Rafah. Image Credit: AP

'4,741 Palestinians killed, 15,898 hurt in Israeli strikes since October 7'

More than 4,741 Palestinians killed and 15,898 wounded in Israeli strikes on Gaza since october 7, the Palestinian health ministry said on Sunday.

UN unsure when more aid will enter Gaza

The United Nations humanitarian chief says it’s unclear whether more aid will enter Gaza on Sunday.

“We had hoped for more today,” Martin Griffiths told Sky News. “I‘m not sure we’re going to get it. We’re deep in negotiation at the moment with the Israelis, the Egyptians, with a huge amount of help, by the way, from the United States.

Griffiths said the trucks that entered on Saturday were “a very good start but it’s nowhere near enough.”

He said the main sticking point was the inspection regime for the trucks coming in.

He said it should be “efficient, quick, hopefully random, hopefully light.”

“If they don’t go today, we certainly expect, assume and plan for trucks to move in tomorrow,” Griffiths said.

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Griffiths said the trucks that entered on Saturday were “a very good start but it’s nowhere near enough.” Image Credit: Reuters

212 people held hostage in Gaza

Israel has confirmed that 212 people are being held hostage in Gaza, the military spokesperson said on Sunday, adding that Israeli strikes overnight killed dozens of Palestinian fighters, including the deputy chief of Hamas rocket forces.

On the northern front, Israel has been attacking fighters trying to fire missiles in across the Lebanese border and struck a site in Lebanon from where a missile was fired at an Israeli aircraft, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said in a briefing.

'Heartbreaking' life-or-death decisions for Gaza's doctors

Hospitals across the Gaza Strip are scrounging for fuel stocks to keep the lights on in critical wards and continue to save the lives of the relentless stream of wounded patients.

Serious shortages in other supplies, including ventilators, are forcing medical teams to prioritize the lives of those who can be saved for certain over severe cases that require complex care, said Dr. Mohammed Qandeel, who works in the Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis.

“It’s heartbreaking,” he told The Associated Press. “Every day, if we receive 10 severely injured patients, we have to manage with maybe three or five ICU beds available. We have to choose who must face death, or manage them in regular wards or do some limited care because we think as a medical team, between two patients in a life-threatening situation, we have to give the ventilator to the patient who has a higher chance of improving in 24 hours."

Many departments in the hospital are plunged in darkness as medical staff allow electricity only in critical departments where patients risk death without it.

India sends medical aid to Palestinians

India on Sunday sent nearly 6.5 tonnes (7.1 tons) of medical aid and 32 tonnes (35 tons) of disaster relief supplies to Palestinians.

An Indian air force plane carrying the materials left New Delhi for Egypt’s El-Arish airport, said Arindam Bagchi, an External Affairs Ministry spokesman. The aid includes essential life-saving medicines, surgical items, tents, sleeping bags, tarps and water purification tablets among other items, he said.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed condolences and sympathy for those killed and wounded as a result of the attacks in Israel and said that Indian people stand in solidarity with Israel. India has reiterated its position in favor of direct negotiations for establishing a two-state solution.

Israeli strikes knock out Damascus, Aleppo airports

Syrian state media reported that Israeli airstrikes early Sunday targeted the international airports of the Syrian capital Damascus and the northern city of Aleppo, killing one person. The runways were damaged and put out of service.

The attack is the second this month on the Damascus International airport and the third on Aleppo’s airport as tensions increases in the Middle East over the Israel-Hamas war.

Syrian state media quoted an unnamed military official as saying the airports were struck by the Israeli military from the Mediterranean to the west and from Syria’s Israeli-occupied Golan Heights in the south. It said one employee was killed and another wounded in Damascus in addition to material damage.

The Israeli military had no immediate comment.

At least 55 dead as Israel steps up Gaza strikes

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Smoke billows after an Israeli strike on Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip. Image Credit: AFP

The Hamas government said Sunday that at least 55 people were killed in overnight raids on the Gaza Strip, after Israel announced it was stepping up strikes.

"More than 55 martyrs," the government press office said in a statement on the latest night of bombing in response to the Hamas attacks on Israel on October 7.

It added that more than 30 homes had been destroyed in the hours after an Israeli military spokesman said that raids would be increased.

Hezbollah 'dragging Lebanon into a war'

Escalating attacks by militant group Hezbollah risk "dragging Lebanon into a war", Israel's military said Sunday, after renewed cross-border exchanges of fire that have raised fears of a wider conflict.

"Hezbollah... is dragging Lebanon into a war that it will gain nothing from, but stands to lose a lot," warned Israel Defense Forces spokesman Jonathan Conricus. "They're escalating the situation."

US orders more defense systems in Middle East

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced he was sending additional air defense systems to the Middle East as well as putting more troops on prepare-to-deploy orders.

Austin said the U.S. would be delivering a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD, battery along with additional Patriot missile defense system batteries “to locations throughout the region to increase force protection for U.S. troops.” Bases in Iraq and Syria have been repeatedly targeted by drones in the days since hundreds were killed in a hospital blast in Gaza, and the destroyer USS Carney intercepted land attack cruise missiles in the Red Sea shot from Yemen on Thursday.

Austin said he had also placed additional forces on prepare-to-deploy orders, “part of prudent contingency planning” as the U.S. and others brace for the potential of a wider regional conflict and as Israel prepares to launch a ground assault into Gaza. He said he gave the orders after detailed discussions with President Joe Biden on the recent escalations by Iran and its proxy forces across the region.

Israel strikes underground compound at West Bank

Israeli Defense Forces said a military aircraft launched a strike early Sunday on the Al-Ansar mosque at the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank.

The IDF said via X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, that Hamas and Islamic Jihad militants had been using an “underground terror route” beneath the mosque. One Palestinian was killed in the shelling, Palestinian Red Crescent said.

Tensions have risen in the West Bank, where dozens of Palestinians have been killed in clashes with Israeli troops, arrest raids and attacks by Jewish settlers.

Italian Premier goes to Israel

Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni has made a trip to Israel to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, her office said.

The meeting Saturday came after Meloni participated in a summit in Cairo focused on ways to de-escalate the raging Israel-Hamas war.

Meloni's office said that in her meeting she reiterated “the right of Israel to defend itself under international law and to live in peace” while also underlining "the importance of guaranteeing humanitarian access to Gaza and a prospect of peace for the region.’’

Her office said she brought “a message of solidary and Italy's closeness” following Hamas’ unprecedented attack on Oct. 7.

Biden speaks with 2 freed hostages

President Joe Biden has spoken on the phone with two freed Americans who had been held hostage by Hamas in Gaza.

Judith Raanan and her 17-year-old daughter, Natalie, were released Friday. It was the first such hostage release from among the roughly 200 people the militant group abducted from Israel during its Oct. 7 rampage.

Video of Biden speaking with them by phone was posted Saturday on the X platform, formerly known as Twitter. He told the mother and daughter that he was glad they had been released.

“We’re going to get them all out, God willing,” he said.

Natalie thanked Biden for his “services” to Israel. Judith said they are in good health.

Hamas said it released the mother and daughter for humanitarian reasons in an agreement with the Qatari government.

Family members have said Judith and Natalie had been on a trip from their home in the Chicago suburb of Evanston to Israel to celebrate Judith’s mother’s birthday and the Jewish holidays.

Israel says it will increase attacks on Gaza

Israel plans to step up its attacks on the Gaza Strip starting Saturday as preparation for the next stage of its war on Hamas, Israel's military spokesman says.

Asked about a possible ground invasion into Gaza, Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari told reporters Saturday night that the military was trying to create optimal conditions beforehand.

“We will deepen our attacks to minimize the dangers to our forces in the next stages of the war. We are going to increase the attacks, from today,” Hagari said.

He repeated his call for residents of Gaza City to head south for their safety.

UN agencies say more aid is needed

United Nations aid agencies said a first 20-truck convoy of assistance that reached Gaza Saturday was “only a small beginning and far from enough.”

The agencies, including the World Health Organization, the World Food Program and others, said in a joint statement that more than 1.6 million people are in critical need of humanitarian aid.

“Vulnerable people are at greatest risk and children are dying at an alarming rate and being denied their right to protection, food, water and health care,” they said.

The agencies, which also include the U.N. population fund and UNICEF, called for a humanitarian cease-fire, along with immediate, unrestricted humanitarian access throughout Gaza.

“Gaza was a desperate humanitarian situation before the most recent hostilities. It is now catastrophic. The world must do more,” they said.

Gaza hospitals are overwhelmed

Doctors Without Borders says Gaza’s health care system is “facing collapse.”

The global medical group said Saturday that hospitals in Gaza are “overwhelmed and lacking resources” amid continued Israeli airstrikes and siege following Hamas’ unprecedented attack on Oct. 7.

The group’s warning come after Medhat Abbas, an official with the Gaza health ministry, said early Saturday that five hospitals has stopped functioning and two others were partly out of service.

“We recently made a large donation of medical stock, including medicines, narcotics and medical equipment to Al Shifa hospital, the main surgical facility in the strip,” the group, known by its French acronym MSF, wrote on X platform.

An nurse with the aid group in Gaza, Loay Harb, said that when the supplies were delivered to the hospital, she and others “saw hundreds of people taking shelter and it was difficult to walk inside.”

Abbas calls for international peace summit

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is calling for an international peace summit to bring about the end of the Israel-Hamas war.

Speaking at a conference in Cairo on Saturday, Abbas reiterated his “complete rejection of the killing of civilians on both sides.” He also urged the “release of all civilians, prisoners, and detainees,” likely alluding to some 210 hostages held by Hamas in Gaza and the Palestinian prisoners held by Israel.

Abbas leads the Palestinian Authority, a government exercising semi-autonomous control in the West Bank. The government is deeply loathed among Palestinians, who view it as corrupt and collaborationist with Israel.

Hamas seized control of the Palestinian Authority in the Gaza Strip in 2007 and enjoys a strong base of support in the West Bank.

Israeli airstrikes hit residential buildings

A barrage of Israeli airstrikes on Gaza’s southern city of Khan Younis near a U.N. school struck several residential buildings, prompting a frantic rescue effort as medics rushed several dead bodies and dozens of wounded Palestinians to the hospital.

At the Hamouda family home seven people were killed and 40 others were wounded, survivors told The Associated Press at the scene of the attack.

Cairo summit

At a summit of world leaders in Cairo focused on ways to de-escalate the raging Israel-Hamas war, representatives from Arab and European nations called for more humanitarian aid to flow into Gaza and appealed for protection of civilians in the strip.

Several Arab leaders, including Egypt and Jordan, took the opportunity to castigate the international community over its inaction and a double standard they said that the world displayed on the devastating Israeli bombing campaign on Gaza.

The response of the world, the office of President Abdel Fatah el-Sissi said, displayed a “shortcoming in the values of the international community in addressing crises.”

“While we see one place officials rushing and competing to promptly condemn the killing of innocent people, we find incomprehensible hesitation in denouncing the same act in another place,” it said in reference to fierce Western condemnation of Hamas’ attack on Israel and a weaker reaction to Palestinian suffering.

The summit did not immediately produce any statements about the prospects of a cease-fire