The death toll from clashes between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas has topped 10,000, with no signs of a let-up in Israeli attacks against the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip since the war began last month.
Gaza health authorities said on Wednesday that the number of fatalities in the besieged Palestinian enclave had risen to 8,796, while Israel has reported more than 1,400 people killed.
Meanwhile, dozens of people from Gaza arrived in Egypt through the Rafah crossing on Wednesday, The Associated Press reported, saying it appears to be the first time foreign passport holders have been allowed to leave Gaza since the war began following the Oct 7 surprise attack by Hamas on the Jewish nation.
Under a deal brokered between Egypt, Israel and Hamas, around 80 wounded people and an initial list of 500 foreign passport holders, many of them Palestinians with dual citizenship, were expected to be allowed out of Gaza in the coming days, Reuters said, citing sources in several countries.
The evacuees reportedly include five Japanese citizens, such as those who work for the United Nations as well as aid group Medecins Sans Frontieres, also known by its English name Doctors Without Borders.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Saturday his country’s military has begun “the second stage of the war” against Hamas by expanding ground operations in Gaza, vowing to rescue more than 200 hostages held by the Islamist militant group.
Israel said it has attacked more than 11,000 terrorist targets in the enclave since the start of the war.