Israel-Gaza war live: Bodies of three more hostages recovered by Israeli military; ICJ set to make new ruling on war in Gaza

israel-gaza war live: bodies of three more hostages recovered by israeli military; icj set to make new ruling on war in gaza

Relatives and supporters of Israeli hostages held by Hamas in Gaza hold photos of their loved ones during a performance calling for their return in Tel Aviv.

LIVE – Updated at 10:17

Bodies of Orión Hernández Radoux, Hanan Yablonka and Michel Nisenbaum recovered by IDF; ruling part of a wider case at international court of justice.

Whistleblowers allege widespread abuses at Israeli detention camp

10:17

Lorenzo Tondo and Quique Kierszenbaum in Jerusalem have written about sources describing Palestinian inmates being beaten, kept shackled to hospital beds or made to stand for hours:

Prisoners held at an Israeli detention camp in the Negev desert are being subjected to widespread physical and mental abuses, with at least one reported case of a man having his limb amputated as a result of injuries sustained from constant handcuffing, according to two whistleblowers who worked at the site.

The sources described harrowing treatment of detainees at the Israeli Sde Teiman camp, which holds Palestinians from Gaza and suspected Hamas militants, including inmates regularly being kept shackled to hospital beds, blindfolded and forced to wear nappies.

According to the two sources, the facility, located approximately 18 miles from the Gaza border, consists of two distinct sections: an enclosure where up to 200 Palestinian detainees from Gaza are confined under severe physical restrictions inside cages, and a field hospital where dozens of patients with war injuries are handcuffed to their beds and often deprived of pain relief.

One whistleblower, who has worked in the facility as a prison guard, said detainees were forced to stand up for hours, or to sit on their knees. The source, who spoke out at risk of reprisals, said several detainees were beaten with truncheons and not able to move their heads or to speak at the facility.

You can read the full report here:

 

09:59

Power outages have forced the shutdown of the generators at Shuhada al-Aqsa Hospital in Deri el-Balah in the Gaza Strip. A hospital spokesperson, Khalil al-Deqran, told Al Jazeera that doctors are unable to use many of its facilities and are treating patients manually.

“This will lead to the death of so many sick and wounded people”, said al-Deqran, who said that some of the patients are being treated on the floor.

A statement from the hospital reported by the Quds News Network said: “We appeal to the international community and all international and UN organisations to supply 50,000 litres of fuel to the hospital within the coming hours to prevent a health catastrophe affecting hundreds of patients and injured individuals. Any delay in supplying the fuel would effectively be a death sentence for these patients and injured individuals.”

No sign of attack on Iran president's helicopter before fatal crash, armed forces say

09:22

Moving briefly away from Gaza and Israel developments, Iran’s military says the helicopter carrying late President Ebrahim Raisi caught fire soon after it crashed into a mountain and there was no sign it was attacked, according to a report from the Associated Press.

The statement from the general staff of the armed forces in charge of investigating the crash was read on state television late Thursday. The statement did not lay blame for the crash but said more details would come after further investigation.

The crash on Sunday killed Raisi, the foreign minister and six other people. The general staff’s statement said communications with the helicopter contained nothing suspicious, there was no sign of anything shot at it, and its flight path did not change before the crash. Raisi was buried on Thursday.

 

09:16

Benjamin Netanyahu has sent condolences to the families of Orión Hernández Radoux, Hanan Yablonka, and Michel Nisenbaum after the IDF said it had recovered bodies of the hostages from Gaza.

“We have a national and moral duty to do everything we can to return our hostages — the living and the deceased — and that is what we are doing,” he said. “I congratulate the IDF and security forces who acted with great courage in the heart of enemy territory to return them to their families and for burial in Israel.”

The president of Israel, Isaac Herzog, said his “heart goes out” to the families of the hostages. “It is our duty as a country to return all of them — the living and those we must bring to burial in Israel,” he says. “May the memories of Hanan, Orión and Michel be a blessing.”

EU staff sign letter expressing concerns over its handling of Gaza crisis

09:10Ashifa Kassam

More than 200 staff members of EU institutions and agencies have signed a letter expressing “growing concern” over the union’s response to the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, arguing that it runs contrary to its core values and aim of promoting peace.

The letter, signed by 211 people in their personal capacity as citizens and addressed to the EU’s top three officials, begins by condemning the 7 October attacks “in the strongest terms”.

Citing the January ruling by the international court of justice that suggested a credible risk to Palestinians under the genocide convention, the letter warns that the EU’s “continued apathy to the plight of Palestinians” risks normalising a world order where the sheer use of force, rather than a rule-based system, determines state security, territorial integrity and political independence.

“It was precisely to avert such a grim world order that our grandparents, witnesses of the horrors of World War II, created Europe,” the letter reads. “To stand idly by in the face of such an erosion of the international rule of law would mean failing the European project as envisaged by them. This cannot happen in our name.”

The letter, shared exclusively with the Guardian, was written by a small group of staffers, said Zeno Benetti, one of the organisers.

“We couldn’t believe that our leaders who were so vocal about human rights and who described Europe as the beacon of human rights were suddenly so silent about the crisis unfolding in Gaza,” he said. “It’s like suddenly we were asked to turn a blind eye on our values and on the values that we were allegedly working for. And for us, this was not acceptable.”

 

09:08Sam Jones

Israel’s foreign minister has reacted furiously after Yolanda Díaz, Spain’s labour minister and one of the country’s deputy prime ministers, welcomed her government’s decision to recognise a Palestinian state and used the controversial slogan, “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free”.

In a post on X, Israel Katz described Díaz’s choice of words as “antisemitic” and said it would result in Israel preventing the Spanish consulate in Jerusalem from providing services to Palestinians from the West Bank. He also suggested Díaz study her own country’s history - especially the seven centuries of Islamic rule between 711 and 1492, a period that saw varying degrees of coexistence between the Iberian peninsula’s Muslim, Christian and Jewish populations.

“In response to Spain’s recognition of a Palestinian state and the antisemitic call by Spain’s deputy prime minister to not just recognise a Palestinian state but to ‘liberate Palestine from the river to the sea,’ I have decided to sever the connection between Spain’s representation in Israel and the Palestinians, and to prohibit the Spanish consulate in Jerusalem from providing services to Palestinians from the West Bank,” wrote Israel.

“If this ignorant, hate-filled individual wants to understand what radical Islam truly seeks, she should study the 700 years of Islamic rule in Al-Andalus—today’s Spain.”

The European Jewish Association, which represents Jewish communities across the continent, has called on Josep Borrell to condemn Diaz

“The Spanish Vice-President, Yolanda Diaz, is openly calling for the genocide of the world’s only Jewish State, Israel,” it said in a statement. “This cannot and must not stand. We immediately call on Josep Borrell to condemn this. EU Member States have obligations under the treaties not to call for the annihilation of third countries.

“We immediately call for Prime Minister Sanchez to distance the Spanish government from these genocidal remarks. The Vice-President’s from the river to the sea call carries with it echoes of the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Jews from Spain in 1492, not to mention the thousands burned alive in auto-da-fe’s. Her statement is also an endorsement of Hamas’ ideology. She must resign.”

Bodies of three more hostages recovered from northern Gaza by Israeli military

09:00

The bodies of three more hostages have been recovered from the northern Gaza Strip overnight, the IDF has said.

Orión Hernández Radoux, 30, Hanan Yablonka, 42, and Michel Nisenbaum, 59, were kidnapped from the Mefalsim area and, according to the Israeli military in comments reported by the Times of Israel and the Jerusalem Post, were killed on 7 October. Until recently, there had been no information as to their status and they were believed to be alive.

The Times of Israel says Hernández Radoux, a Mexican-French national, was the boyfriend of Shani Louk, one of the four hostages whose bodies were found in Jabaliya last week. Hernández Radoux and Yablonka were at the Supernova music festival.

The IDF says the bodies of the three hostages were recovered in a joint operation carried out by the military and Shin Bet.

 

08:52

The European Union’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell has said that recognising a Palestinian state was not a gift to Hamas.

Ireland, Norway and Spain said on Wednesday they would recognise a Palestinian state on 28 May, to help secure a halt to Israel’s Gaza offensive after the Hamas attack on 7 October and revive peace talks that stalled a decade ago.

“Recognising the Palestinian state is not a gift to Hamas, quite the contrary,” Borrell said in comments reported by Reuters. “The Palestinian authority is not Hamas, on the contrary they are deeply confronted.”

He added the EU already talked, financed and met the Palestinian authority. “Every time someone makes the decision to support a Palestinian state, the reaction of Israel is to transform it in an antisemitic attack,” he added

 

08:40

The US-built pier in Gaza is beginning to get deliver more aid to Palestinians however conditions are challenging, US officials said Thursday.

Crowds overran some of the first trucks coming in via the pier and one man in the crowd was shot dead in unexplained circumstances, leading to a two-day suspension of aid distribution, the Associated Press reports.

The US military worked with the UN and Israeli officials to select safer alternate routes for trucks coming from the pier, US Vice Admiral Brad Cooper said. As a result, the pier on Wednesday accounted for 27 of the 70 total trucks of aid that the UN was able to round up from all land and sea crossings into Gaza for distribution to civilians, the United States said.

That’s a fraction of the 150 truckloads of food, emergency nutrition treatment and other supplies that US officials aim to bring in when the sea route is working at maximum capacity.

 

08:27Peter Beaumont

The international court of justice is expected to issue a new ruling on Israel’s conduct of its war in Gaza at 3pm CET (1400 BST) on Friday, as the US expressed concern over Israel’s growing diplomatic isolation among countries that have traditionally supported it.

Amid speculation that the ICJ could order a halt to Israel’s offensive, a second top global court – the international criminal court – identified the three judges who will hear a request for arrest warrants against Hamas leaders, Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and its defence minister, Yoav Gallant.

Last week South Africa asked the ICJ, which is located in The Hague and also known as the world court, to order a halt to Israel’s offensive in Gaza, and in Rafah in particular, saying this was necessary to ensure the survival of the Palestinian people.

ICJ decisions have in the past been ignored, as the top UN legal body has no way to enforce its decisions, but they carry international weight. A ruling against Israel could add to its political isolation after a series of setbacks this week.

Israel suggested it would defy any order to stop fighting.

“No power on Earth will stop Israel from protecting its citizens and going after Hamas in Gaza,” a spokesperson, Avi Hyman, told reporters on Thursday.

The latest legal moves come as Israeli media reported that Israel Defense Forces had concluded that troops had “breached regulations” when they killed a UN staff member and wounded a second one last week in Gaza when a marked UN vehicle was shelled and hit with a drone-dropped grenade.

Israel has faced mounting problems on the international stage in recent days. On Wednesday, after Ireland, Norway and Spain said they would recognise Palestinian statehood, the US national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, expressed concern over Israel’s isolation.

Opening summary

08:25

It’s just past 10am in Gaza and Tel Aviv, welcome to the continuation of our live coverage of the Israel-Gaza war.

Judges at the UN’s top court, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), are due to rule on South Africa’s request to order Israel to halt its Rafah offensive and withdraw from Gaza, part of a wider case accusing Israel of genocide.

South Africa’s lawyers asked the court last week to impose emergency measures, and said Israel’s attacks on the southern Gaza city “must be stopped” to ensure the survival of the Palestinian people.

Pretoria has urged the International Court of Justice to order an “immediate” stop to Israel’s campaign and facilitate access of humanitarian aid.

Israel has repeatedly dismissed the accusations of genocide as baseless. It has argued in court that the operations in Gaza are self-defence and targeted at Hamas militants who attacked Israel on 7 October.

Rulings by the ICJ, also known as the world court, are final and binding, but have been ignored in the past. The court has no enforcement powers.

The ICJ’s ruling follows a landmark request by the international criminal court’s (ICC) lead prosecutor to seek arrest warrants for top Israeli and Hamas leaders.

More on that in a moment but first, here’s a summary of the latest developments:

    Prisoners held at an Israeli detention camp in the Negev desert are being subjected to widespread physical and mental abuses, with at least one reported case of a man having his limb amputated as a result of injuries sustained from constant handcuffing, according to two whistleblowers who worked at the site. Responding to the claims, the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement: “Among the detainees held at the Sde Teiman facility are skilled military operatives at a very high level of danger. Detainees are handcuffed according to their level of risk and their state of health.”

    All EU donors have now resumed their support to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (Unrwa), said Josep Borrell, the EU foreign policy chief, on Thursday. In a social media post, Borrell described Unrwa as “an indispensable lifeline in Gaza and the region”.

    The Hostages Families Forum in Israel has released graphic footage of female Israeli soldiers captured by Hamas from a military base during the 7 October attacks. The three-minute video showed the women, all IDF personnel, sitting on the ground, some bruised and bloodied, with their hands tied after their capture from the Nahal Oz base in southern Israel.

    Republican US House Speaker Mike Johnson said on Thursday that the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, would soon address a joint meeting of Congress. Delivering a keynote speech at the Israeli embassy’s annual Independence Day reception, Johnson, the top congressional Republican and a critic of the Democratic president’s Israel policy, said it would be “a strong show of support for the Israeli government in their time of greatest need,” Reuters reports.

    The CIA director, Williams Burns, will shortly travel to Europe for a meeting with the Mossad director, David Barnea, to try to revive talks on the hostages in Gaza, Axios said on Thursday, citing US and Israeli officials.

    At least 35,800 Palestinians have been killed and 80,011 injured in Israel’s military offensive on Gaza since 7 October, the Gaza health ministry said in a statement on Thursday. The Hamas-run health ministry does not distinguish between combatants and non-combatants.

    Israeli forces killed at least 60 Palestinians in aerial and ground bombardments across the Gaza Strip on Thursday and battled in close combat with Hamas-led militants in areas of the southern city of Rafah, health officials and Hamas media said. Israeli tanks advanced in Rafah’s south-east, edged towards the city’s western district of Yibna and continued to operate in three eastern suburbs, residents said, according to Reuters.

    The World Bank says the fiscal situation of the Palestinian Authority, which runs the West Bank, has worsened in the last three months, “significantly raising the risk of a fiscal collapse,” Reuters reports. “The rapidly widening gap between the amount of revenues coming in, and the amount needed to finance essential public expenditure, is driving a fiscal crisis,” it said.

    A two-day Israeli raid on the occupied West Bank city of Jenin killed at least 12 Palestinians, health authorities and an Agence France-Presse (AFP) correspondent reported. The Palestinian health ministry in Ramallah said Israeli forces had killed 12 people including four children, and injured 25 during the fighting which began on Tuesday morning.

    Both Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and Palestinian militant group Hamas condemned the raid. Israel’s army said on Wednesday troops had “exchanged fire with armed men and killed a number of terrorists, including two terrorists who threw explosives at the forces”.

    Surgeon Usaeed Jabareen, from Jenin’s Khalil Suleiman government hospital, was among those killed on Tuesday said the official Palestinian news agency Wafa and medical charity Doctors Without Borders. An AFP correspondent on Thursday saw five bodies at the hospital morgue, including Jabareen’s.

    US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has warned of the risk of a “humanitarian crisis” if Israel cuts off a crucial financing channel to Palestinian banks. Ahead of a meeting of G7 finance ministers in Stresa in northern Italy, she told reporters: “I’m particularly concerned by Israel’s threats to take action that would lead to Palestinian banks being cut off from their Israeli correspondent banks.”

    A United Nations expert called on Israel on Thursday to investigate multiple allegations of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of Palestinian detainees in the wake of the 7 October attack by Hamas. The UN special rapporteur on torture, Alice Jill Edwards, said in a statement she had received reports of some detainees being deprived of sleep, threatened with physical and sexual violence, insulted and exposed to humiliating acts, including “being photographed and filmed in degrading poses”. There was no immediate reaction from the Israeli government or military.

    Lebanese schoolchildren on a minibus had a narrow escape on Thursday when a drone strike killed a Hezbollah fighter in the car ahead, blowing out the windscreen of their vehicle and injuring three pupils. The source close to Hezbollah told AFP that Israel was behind the strike, which killed a Hezbollah member who was named as Mohammad Ali Nasser Farran.

    Later on Thursday, Hezbollah said it had launched dozens of rockets at a base in northern Israel. It said its katyusha barrage was “in response to the assassination carried out by the enemy in Kafardjal, and the injuring and terrorising of children”.

    A merchant ship off the coast of Yemen reported a missile hitting the water nearby, the UK’s sea trade monitoring agency reported on Thursday, adding that the vessel and all crew were safe and proceeding to the next port of call.

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