Israel’s military ordered hundreds of thousands of civilians living in Gaza City to evacuate ahead of a feared Israel ground offensive. The directive came Friday on the heels of what the United Nations said was a warning it received from Israel to evacuate 1.1 million people living in northern Gaza. Palestinians and some Egyptian officials fear that Israel ultimately hopes to push Gaza’s people out through the southern border with Egypt.
Here’s what’s happening in the latest Israel-Hamas war:
BEIJING – The European Union’s foreign policy chief said Saturday that the Israeli military needs to give more time for 1 million people to evacuate northern Gaza ahead of any military action.
Josep Borrell, speaking to news media during a visit to China, welcomed the warning to evacuate but said the tight time frame could create a humanitarian crisis given the lack of shelters and transportation.
Palestinians were fleeing in a mass exodus after Israel’s military told people to evacuate to the southern part of the besieged territory ahead of an expected ground invasion.
SEOUL, South Korea – A South Korean military plane evacuating 220 South Korean and other Asian nationals from Israel has departed Tel Aviv and was expected to land in South Korea later Saturday, Seoul’s Foreign Ministry said.
The people transported on the KC-330 military transport plane included 163 South Koreans, 51 Japanese nationals and six Singaporean nationals, the ministry said.
About 470 South Koreans remain in Israel, most of them long-term residents who have chosen to stay. No South Korean casualties have so far been reported from the violence in Israel and Gaza.
The Palestinian Health Ministry reported 16 Palestinians killed Friday in the occupied West Bank, bringing to 51 the total number of West Bank Palestinians killed since Oct. 7, when Hamas waged its brutal assault on Israel.
The United Nations says attacks by Israeli settlers have surged there since the Hamas assault.
UNITED NATIONS – Relatives of Israelis abducted during Hamas militants’ attack the previous weekend pleaded Friday at the United Nations for the world’s help getting their loved ones home.
Speaking by video from Israel, Yoni Asher told diplomats at an Israel-organized event that he hadn’t slept or eaten since his wife and two small daughters vanished Oct. 7 while visiting his mother-in-law in the country’s south.
“I don’t know if I got any more tears left,” he said. “I’m exhausted, and I just want to approach whoever can hear me in the international community. Please bring back my baby girls.”
Hamas fighters took 150 hostages during Saturday’s surprise assault.
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