In the Gaza Strip, the war has entered its fourth month. Since the beginning, Israeli military operations have left 23,210 dead in Gaza, mostly women and minors, according to a latest report, Tuesday, January 9, from Hamas, in power in Gaza since 2007. In the last twenty-four hours, 126 people were killed, again according to this new toll which could not, however, be independently verified, which also reports 59,167 people injured since October 7.

Fears of a regional escalation of conflict between Israel and its other enemies, an informal alliance of Iran-backed armed groups in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen, have continued to grow. Israeli strikes and exchanges of fire with the Islamist movement Hezbollah supported by Iran are almost daily.

The leader of the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas, Ismaïl Haniyeh, on Tuesday, January 9, called on Muslim countries to “support” him in his war against Israel in the Gaza Strip by providing him with “weapons.”

“The role of the Muslim nation (…) is major” and “the time has come to support the resistance with weapons, because it is the battle of Al-Aqsa and not only the battle of the Palestinian people,” according to a speech delivered in Doha, the text of which was transmitted to the media in the Gaza Strip. The Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem is the third holiest site in Islam.

The Lebanese Islamist movement said in a statement that it had targeted “the command center of the northern region of the Israeli army” using “several suicide drones”, in “response” to the January 2 elimination of the number two from Hamas, Saleh Al-Arouri, and that of its leader, Wissam Tawil, killed Monday.

For its part, the Israeli army announced that “interceptors had been launched towards several hostile air targets crossing Lebanon towards Israeli territory”, after sirens sounded. The army confirmed that “an enemy aircraft fell on its base” in northern Israel, “without causing any injuries or damage.”

Hezbollah’s number two, Sheikh Naim Qassem, said Tuesday that the assassination of leaders, including Wissam Tawil, whom he described as “a commander of the Radwan force,” Hezbollah’s elite unit, was not was not “a hindrance but rather a motivation to move forward with more determination”.

The American Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, called on Tuesday in Tel Aviv the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, to spare the Palestinian civilians trapped in the small besieged territory. During his fourth tour of the Middle East since the start of the war, Mr. Blinken reaffirmed to Mr. Netanyahu “[US] support for Israel’s right to prevent a repeat of the October 7 attacks and insisted on the importance of preventing further harm to civilians and protecting civilian infrastructure in Gaza,” according to a State Department statement. The top American diplomat also reiterated to the Israeli prime minister the need to ensure “lasting peace for Israel and the region, which involves the creation of a Palestinian state,” the statement added.

During his meeting with Isaac Herzog, the President of Israel, Mr. Blinken spoke of the “very difficult moment” that Israel is going through, while saying that the country had a “real chance” of integration in the region among its neighbors Arabs.

On the sidelines of his talks in Tel Aviv, the American Secretary of State was to meet families of hostages, reiterating the “relentless efforts to free them”. Ongoing efforts for their release were part of discussions between Messrs. Blinken and Netanyahu.

The Israeli army announced on Tuesday the death of nine soldiers in the Gaza Strip the day before, one of its heaviest daily tolls since the start of its ground operation in the Palestinian coastal territory. According to Israeli media, six of these nine soldiers killed died in the explosion of an Israeli army truck loaded with explosives and intended to destroy underground infrastructure. Dozens of soldiers were also injured in this explosion. In total, according to the army, 185 of its soldiers have died since October 27.

The Israeli army also continued its bombings against Hamas in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, while Mr. Blinken is visiting Israel. An Agence France-Presse correspondent reported intense bombings overnight in Khan Younes and Rafah.

For its part, the Israeli army announced that its forces had killed around forty militants over the past twenty-four hours as part of “extended ground operations including airstrikes” in Khan Yunis, and that its troops had seized weapons. For their part, in two press releases, the Ezzedine Al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, claimed on Monday to have “killed and injured” Israeli soldiers and “targeted” a Merkava tank in the sector of this city.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday it was seeing its capacity to help Gaza residents “shrink” as a “humanitarian catastrophe” unfolds in the territory ravaged by Israel’s war against Hamas. “We see this humanitarian catastrophe unfolding before our eyes. We see the health system collapsing very quickly,” Sean Casey, a WHO emergency team coordinator, said by video conference from Gaza.

According to Mr. Casey, the WHO has “not seen a drop in intensity” on the ground. “What we are still seeing is a huge number of casualties from the fighting, such as shrapnel injuries, gunshot wounds, crush injuries from collapsing buildings: this continues to happen every day,” he said. he said. Despite a UN Security Council resolution last month calling for more aid to be provided to Gaza, according to the WHO things have only gotten worse. “We have seen humanitarian space shrink,” Mr. Casey said.

He stressed that WHO and other UN organizations are “constantly trying to reach the areas of greatest need.” “Every day we form our convoys, we wait for authorization but we do not have it,” he lamented. “So we come back and do it again the next day. » The WHO has been unable to travel to northern Gaza over the past two weeks, and has had to cancel six planned missions there.

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) said on Tuesday that crimes against journalists were included in its investigation into war crimes in Gaza, where dozens of journalists have been killed.

“RSF [Reporters Without Borders] has obtained that the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court includes crimes against journalists in his investigation into Palestine,” the NGO welcomed in a press release on Monday. “Crimes against journalists are being investigated by the prosecutor’s office, among other potential crimes, as part of the ongoing investigation into the situation in Palestine, and RSF’s objectives and actions must be supported and given due consideration. crucial importance in Gaza and elsewhere,” the ICC prosecutor’s office said.

“Journalists are protected by international humanitarian law and the Rome Statute [founding text of the ICC] and must under no circumstances be targeted in the exercise of their important mission,” he continued. At least 79 journalists and media workers, the vast majority Palestinian, have been killed since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. The UN said it was “very concerned” on Monday by this “high toll”.