Hamas kills an IDF soldier taking part in a raid to free hostages in Gaza, as the Israeli army began its biggest bombardment of the territory.
Israel’s General Hagari confirmed that one soldier had been killed and three had been injured during the raid in the Khan Younis city, in southern Gaza.
The soldiers were trying to rescue some of the roughly 200 hostages taken by Hamas during its attacks on October 7.
Hamas said that it had fought with Israel in the south of the territory, destroying a tank and two bulldozers.
Israel confirmed the death and the three injuries from an anti-tank missile.
“An IDF (Israel Defense Forces) soldier was killed, one was moderately injured, and two were lightly injured as a result of an anti-tank missile launched toward an IDF tank and an engineering vehicle,” the army said.
Israel has repeatedly hinted at a ground invasion that will see its troops enter the dense urban environment, which sits on top of a miles-long underground tunnel system dubbed the “Gaza metro”.
The Israeli Defence Forces also said it had hit an “Egyptian position near the border” in a statement on Sunday and expressed sorrow.
Meanwhile, Palestinian media said that Israeli air strikes had killed more than 400 people, which they called the ‘heaviest bombardment’ since the October 7 Hamas attack.
Dozens were killed in the Jabalia refugee camp in northern Gaza, according to local officials. These figures have not been verified independently.
It comes as world leaders including Rishi Sunak and Joe Biden ramp up diplomatic efforts to prevent the war from triggering wider bloodshed across the Middle East.
A Downing Street spokeswoman said: “The leaders reiterated their support for Israel and its right to defend itself against terrorism and called for adherence to international humanitarian law, including the protection of civilians.
“They welcomed the release of two hostages and called for the immediate release of all remaining hostages.”
Meanwhile, Hamas met with the foreign minister of Iran and Israel continued to clash with Lebanon on its northern border, sparking fresh fears the conflict could spread into a wider regional war.