The Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Palestine’s Hamas, announced that it killed six Israeli soldiers at close range on Sunday. The Israeli army confirmed the death of three officers and soldiers in clashes in northern Gaza, bringing the total number of Israeli casualties on Sunday to five.
According to the Al-Qassam Brigades, its fighters targeted a house in the Juhr al-Dik area, where a large number of Israeli soldiers were stationed, with two anti-tank and anti-personnel rockets. The fighters then stormed the house and killed or wounded its occupants. The Al-Qassam Brigades also released new footage of its members attacking Israeli tanks and vehicles in Gaza. The footage showed the uniforms, dog tags, and equipment of many Israeli soldiers.
Meanwhile, the Al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of the Islamic Jihad Movement, said that it shelled a group of Israeli soldiers in Biyarat Murtaja in the Al-Zaytoun neighborhood with mortar shells. The Al-Quds Brigades also claimed that they hit three military vehicles and a D-9 bulldozer in the Zaytoun area in Gaza, as well as an Israeli military vehicle with an RPG rocket near Al-Quds Open University, east of the Beach Camp.
In response, the Israeli army said that the mixed unit in the Search and Rescue Brigade had joined the ground forces invading the Gaza Strip. Israeli media also reported that air raid sirens sounded in the city of Ashkelon and the settlements around Gaza.
Regarding a possible ceasefire agreement, a White House spokesperson denied that any deal had been reached yet between Israel and Hamas.
On Saturday, the Washington Post reported, citing informed sources, that Israel, the United States, and Hamas were close to “an agreement to release dozens of women and children held hostage in the Gaza Strip in exchange for a five-day halt of hostilities.”
In another development, the spokesperson for the Ansar Allah movement (Houthis), Yahya Saree, announced that its forces captured an Israeli ship and brought it to the shores of Yemen. The spokesperson added, “We captured the ship to support our oppressed people in Gaza.”
The Israeli Prime Minister’s Office condemned the capture of the ship as “an Iranian act of terrorism” and warned that it would have international repercussions for the security of global shipping lanes.
The Israeli army denied that there were any Israelis on board the ship, which it said had departed from Turkey on its way to India with an international civilian crew. However, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz said that the ship seized by the Houthis belonged to a company owned by Israeli businessman Rami Unger.