October 23, 2023 - Israel-Hamas war news

By Kathleen Magramo, Sana Noor Haq, Aditi Sangal, Mike Hayes, Elise Hammond and Maureen Chowdhury, CNN

Updated 2:05 p.m. ET, October 24, 2023
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11:59 p.m. ET, October 22, 2023

Senior Israeli official says no Gaza ceasefire as IDF clashes with Hamas. Here's what you should know

From CNN staff

A senior Israeli official told CNN there will be "no ceasefire" in Gaza as the United States and Qatar work to free more than 200 hostages held by Hamas in the besieged enclave.    

The official told CNN they were "not aware" of US calls for a delay to Israel's expected Gaza ground operation, and said both Israel and the US want all the hostages released "as quickly as possible."

"Humanitarian efforts cannot be allowed to impact the mission to dismantle Hamas," the official said.

Here are other headlines you should know:

  • Deadly clash: An Israel Defense Forces soldier was killed and three others were wounded during a raid as part of preparations for a Gaza ground operation, an IDF spokesperson said Sunday. Earlier, Hamas said its fighters had destroyed two Israeli military bulldozers and a tank in an ambush inside Gaza, in what appears to be one of the war's first skirmishes between the two sides on the ground inside the strip. Meanwhile, the IDF says it is stepping up its airstrikes on the enclave, and once again called for civilians to leave northern parts of the strip.
  • "Bloody day" for hospitals: The death toll in Gaza since October 7 has risen to 4,651 with more than 14,245 wounded, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza. Doctors at the Al Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in central Gaza said they endured a "bloody day," overwhelmed by the number of casualties from a flurry of Israeli airstrikes. Some parents in Gaza have resorted to writing their children's names on their legs to help identify them, should either they or the children be killed, according to videos filmed by a journalist working for CNN. And at the strip's main medical facility, the Al-Shifa Hospital, doctors have been forced to reduce the duration of dialysis sessions for hundreds of kidney patients as electricity and fuel supplies dwindle, the health ministry said.
  • Aid trickles in: A CNN journalist observed at least 14 humanitarian relief trucks, sponsored by the Egyptian Red Crescent and the United Nations, entering Gaza from Egypt through the Rafah crossing on Sunday evening. The food and medicine was then transferred to a second set of vehicles on the Palestinian side of the crossing to complete the journey to a UN agency's site. Aid workers in Gaza — which is under a "complete siege" by Israel and running critically low on basic resources — said the two convoys that arrived this weekend will help, but only barely start to address needs across the densely populated strip.
  • West Bank airstrike: The Israeli military said it launched an airstrike early Sunday against a mosque in the West Bank city of Jenin to thwart what it called "an imminent terror attack." Three people died in the strike, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health. The target was located within a refugee camp, and the Palestinian foreign ministry said it views the rare strike as a “dangerous escalation” of recent violence in the occupied territory.
12:33 a.m. ET, October 23, 2023

Israel conducts dozens of airstrikes against Hamas in Gaza, IDF says

From CNN’s Tamar Michaelis and Nic Robertson

A picture taken from Israel's southern city of Sderot shows smoke billowing during a Israeli strike on Gaza on October 22.
A picture taken from Israel's southern city of Sderot shows smoke billowing during a Israeli strike on Gaza on October 22. Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images

Israel’s military carried out dozens of airstrikes on Hamas targets late Sunday, the Israel Defense Forces said. 

CNN’s Nic Robertson reported from Sderot, near the Gaza Strip, that Sunday’s strikes have been the most sustained bombardment of northern Gaza he has seen since he began to report from southern Israel two weeks ago.

The Israeli military said late Saturday its forces would be intensifying airstrikes in Gaza

Strikes in southern Lebanon: The IDF also struck two Hezbollah cells on the Lebanese side of the border with Israel, it said via the Telegram messaging platform.

The Israeli military said one cell was adjacent to the area of Mattat and planned to launch anti-tank missiles toward Israel; while the other, located in Har Dov, planned to launch rockets.

8:53 p.m. ET, October 22, 2023

Doctors at central Gaza hospital endure "bloody day" after Israeli strikes

From CNN's Abeer Salman and Kareem Khadder

Conditions at a central Gaza hospital are "catastrophic" Sunday, the medical center's director general told CNN, as the emergency department faces a surge of casualties and electricity and fuel shortages brought on by Israel's airstrikes and blockade.

Dr. Iyad Issa Abu Zaher said it had been a "bloody day" at Al Aqsa Martyrs hospital, updating the number of bodies the hospital has just received to 166.

The Al Aqsa hospital is located in Deir Al Balah in central Gaza — the district where Israel carried out airstrikes overnight Saturday into Sunday.

More than 300 wounded people have been admitted, Zaher said.

“It's impossible for any hospital in the world to admit this number of injured, and it's impossible for any medical crew to work with (these) large numbers of injured," the doctor told CNN. "And every injured person needs four or five specialized surgeons and surgeries, and this puts a large burden on the medical crew."
10:24 p.m. ET, October 22, 2023

At least 14 humanitarian aid trucks enter Gaza through Rafah crossing

From CNN's Kareem Khadder and Eyad Kourdi

Trucks carrying humanitarian aid for Palestinians enter Gaza through the Rafah border crossing on the Egyptian border in Rafah, Gaza on October 22.
Trucks carrying humanitarian aid for Palestinians enter Gaza through the Rafah border crossing on the Egyptian border in Rafah, Gaza on October 22. Stringer/Anadolu/Getty Images

A CNN journalist observed at least 14 humanitarian relief trucks, sponsored by the Egyptian Red Crescent and the United Nations, entering the Gaza Strip from Egypt through the Rafah crossing on Sunday late evening local time.

An official with the Palestinian Red Crescent Society in Gaza confirmed to CNN that these trucks have been admitted, and are currently being offloaded to proceed to Gaza storage facilities of the UNRWA, the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees.

Photos from the Palestinian Crossing Authority showed the second set of trucks getting loaded up on the Palestinian side of the crossing to complete the journey to the UNRWA site.

A short statement by Wael Abu Omar, head of public relations at the Palestinian Crossing Authority said the trucks carried "food and medicines" for Gaza.

Some background: The news comes a day after a convoy of 20 Egyptian trucks unloaded humanitarian aid in Gaza after using the same crossing, which was briefly opened Saturday, according to a CNN stringer on the ground.

The critical Rafah crossing with Egypt in the south has been touted as the last hope for Gazans to escape as Israel’s bombs rain down, and many Palestinians have begun moving in its direction in anticipation.

Aid workers in Gaza, which is under a "complete siege" by Israel and running critically low on basic resources, said Saturday's deliveries were a help, but only barely started to address needs across the densely populated strip.

9:29 p.m. ET, October 22, 2023

Israeli soldier killed as IDF prepares for Gaza ground operation, military says

From CNN’s Pierre Meilhan and Tamar Michaelis

An Israel Defense Forces soldier was killed and three others were wounded during a raid as part of preparations for a Gaza ground operation, an IDF spokesperson said Sunday.

The raid was carried out earlier Sunday in the area of Kibbutz Kissufim near the Gaza Strip, IDF spokesperson Daniel Hagari said during a video briefing. An anti-tank missile launched toward an IDF tank and an engineering vehicle left one soldier dead, one with moderate injuries, and two with mild injuries, according to Hagari.

The IDF said the raid was part of the preparations for a Gaza ground operation, with Israeli forces attempting “to dismantle terror infrastructure, clear the area of terrorists, weapons, and locate missing persons, and bodies.”

The family of the killed and wounded soldiers have been notified, according to the IDF.

More background: The Israeli military has been increasing its attacks against Hamas and collecting information regarding the hostages held in Gaza, according to Hagari.

The IDF chief of staff told commanders Saturday that the military is preparing to "enter the Gaza Strip" and "destroy Hamas operatives and infrastructures," but he did not provide a specific timeframe. The US is seeking to delay an Israeli ground offensive in Gaza, in hopes of getting more hostages out and more humanitarian aid into the besieged enclave, according to two sources briefed on discussions

8:48 p.m. ET, October 22, 2023

Hamas and Israeli troops clash inside Gaza

From CNN’s Ibrahim Dahman, Eyad Kourdi and Amir Tal

Hamas fighters clashed with Israeli troops inside Gaza, the Palestinian group’s militant Al-Qassam Brigades said Sunday, in what appears to be one of the first skirmishes between the two sides on the ground inside the strip since war broke out on October 7.

Hamas said its fighters destroyed two Israeli military bulldozers and a tank in an ambush, forcing Israeli troops to retreat into Israel without their vehicles.

“The soldiers of the Zionist force that fell into the Khan Younis ambush left their vehicles and fled east of the fence on foot," the Al-Qassam Brigades said on social media.

The Israel Defense Forces said only that "shots were fired at IDF soldiers operating west of the Gaza Strip security fence, in the area of Kissufim."

"An IDF tank struck the terrorist cell who fired at the soldiers," the IDF added.

Kibbutz Kissufim, in Israel, is east of Khan Younis, in Gaza. 

The IDF confirmed to CNN by phone that its troops had been operating inside Gaza during the incident.

It is not the first time the IDF has said it operated inside Gaza since the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7. On October 13, the IDF said it had carried out raids inside Gaza in the previous 24 hours, but it did not say clashes had taken place.