LIVE UPDATES: Israel carries out airstrikes on Gaza as Hamas official predicts ceasefire soon

Israel and Hamas militants in Gaza continued their cross-border attacks Thursday, as a senior Hamas official predicted a ceasefire soon.

The escalation in violence stretched into an 11th day as Israel carried out more than a dozen airstrikes on Gaza after midnight, including two that destroyed two houses in the territory’s south. At least four people were wounded in an airstrike at the town of Khan Younis in southern Gaza, medics say. 

Israel’s military said its aircraft struck what it said was a “weapons storage unit” located in the Gaza City home of a Hamas official. Aircraft also struck a “military infrastructure located in the residences” of other Hamas commanders, including in Khan Younis.

FAST FACTS

    • Netanyahu had a notably better relationship with President Donald Trump
    • Hamas has sought to portray their rocket barrages as a defense of Jerusalem

The attacks came after President Biden told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a telephone call Wednesday that he expected “significant de-escalation” of the fighting by day’s end, according to the White House.

Netanyahu noted he “greatly appreciates the support of the American president,” but said that Israel would push ahead.

Meanwhile, one senior Hamas official, Moussa Abu Marzouk, told Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen TV: “I think that the ongoing efforts regarding the ceasefire will succeed. I expect a ceasefire to be reached within a day or two, and the ceasefire will be on the basis of mutual agreement,” according to Reuters. 

According to Israel Defense Forces, 4,000 rockets were fired from Gaza toward Israel in the last 10 days.

At least 227 Palestinians, including 64 children, have been killed in airstrikes and more than 1,600 were wounded, according to Gaza health officials. At least 12 people in Israel have been killed by rockets.

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