As Israeli warplanes continue bombing Gaza, Hamas calls for international aid

Mourners stand near covered bodies of the Abu al-Rish family who where killed during an airstrike in Khan Yunis, on the southern Gaza Strip, on Thursday. Photo by Ismael Mohamad/UPI
1 of 11 | Mourners stand near covered bodies of the Abu al-Rish family who where killed during an airstrike in Khan Yunis, on the southern Gaza Strip, on Thursday. Photo by Ismael Mohamad/UPI | License Photo

Oct. 12 (UPI) -- Israel's warplanes continued their bombardment of Gaza on Thursday, the sixth day of its war against Hamas, as the death toll on both sides continued to climb.

As conditions on the ground in Gaza continued to deteriorate, Hamas on Thursday repeated its call on world relief organizations to provide the region with medical and other supplies as Palestinians face war-filled days and nights with little food or water and no electricity.


"Hamas calls on all relief, health and charitable institutions in our Arab and Islamic world and in the international family to urgently and swiftly bring in all necessary medical and relief supplies and fuel, to save the more than 2 million Palestinian citizens from the systematic killing and starvation practiced by the fascist occupation government," Hamas said in a statement.


In a separate statement Thursday afternoon, it also urged its supporters in the West Bank -- "those who carry stones, a knife or weapons" -- to "confront the occupation army and its settlers."

According to the Israeli Defense Forces, its fighter jets struck Gaza in waves targeting Hamas' Nukhba elite forces, hitting what the Israeli Air Force said were operational command centers used by operatives who infiltrated border kibbutz communities Saturday as part of the militant group's surprise assault.

IDF Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari said warplanes attacked five houses used by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip. One of the homes belonged to the brother of Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar's brother, he said.

They also struck a Hamas monitoring center in an attack that also "eliminated" two operatives, Hagari added.

In a separate recorded statement Thursday, Hagari warned those in Gaza sheltering militants were "taking a very big risk."

"We are destroying Hamas' capability to operate in the Gaza Strip," he said, stating one of the IDF's priorities is to clear the area surrounding Gaza.

"We have tens of thousands of soldiers in the area, and they are still initiating contact with terrorists," he said. "Anyone who comes near the Gaza security fence will be neutralized."


Israel was caught unaware by Hamas' multi-prong attack by sky, land and sea that captured several kibbutzim close to the Gaza border.

In response, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who said the country was at war with Hamas, formed a unity government on Wednesday in a sign of solidarity and an effort to thwart the proscribed organization.

Since Saturday's attack, Israel has consistently bombed Gaza, displacing hundreds of thousands of the Palestinian enclave's 2.5 million residents.

Netanyahu vowed late Wednesday to "crush and eliminate" Hamas.

The death toll in the war has climbed to a combined 2,700, with Israeli officials stating more than 1,200 of its citizens were killed and 3,200 injured.

Late Thursday, Palestinian Health Ministry reported that at least 1,537 Palestinians have been killed and another 5,763 wounded.

According to the IDF, its warplanes have struck 2,687 targets in Gaza as of early Thursday.

The bombing has displaced at least 340,000 people, the United Nations Agency for Palestine refugees said early Thursday, an increase of 76,000 in 24 hours.

Nearly 220,000 of those people were sheltering in 92 of UNRWA's schools in Gaza, where officials say there is no humanitarian access to food or other supplies and a water crisis looms.


"Shelters are overcrowded and have limited availability of food, non-food items and potable water," it said in a Wednesday night statement.

"Water supplies cannot be replenished due to the total blockade on the Gaza Strip by the Israeli authorities. Fuel cannot be brought in and Israeli water suppliers can no longer deliver water in Gaza."

UNRWA said Thursday 12 of its workers have been killed since the fighting began.

"UN staff and civilians must be protected at all times," it said. "We mourn this loss and are grieving with our colleagues and the families."

The World Health Organization identified the healthcare workers as nine paramedics, a doctor and a member of auxiliary health staff.

Since Saturday, there have been 51 documented Israeli attacks on healthcare facilities across the Palestinian territory, the WHO said early Thursday.

Scenes from war: Fighting, destruction in Israel and Gaza

A man carries away the body of a child killed in Israeli bombardment after being rescued from the rubble of a building in Rafah in the southern of Gaza Strip on October 19, 2023. Photo by Ismail Muhammad/UPI | License Photo

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