November 9, 2023 Israel-Hamas war

By Kathleen Magramo, Heather Chen, Nadeen Ebrahim, Ed Upright, Alisha Ebrahimji, Adrienne Vogt, Matt Meyer, Elise Hammond, Maureen Chowdhury and Tori B. Powell, CNN

Updated 12:02 a.m. ET, November 10, 2023
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11:55 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

Doctors Without Borders expresses concerns about "dramatic increase in violence" from Israeli forces 

From CNN's Mohammed Tawfeeq

Doctors Without Borders, also known as Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), said in a statement Thursday that it was "witnessing a dramatic increase in violence from Israeli forces in Jenin, in the West Bank."

"Today there has been a surge in violence, with widespread bombing and shooting," the organization's statement read. "This morning leaflets were dropped on Jenin refugee camp, telling residents to evacuate, many of whom have no safe place to go. Our teams in Jenin have treated over 30 patients with gunshot and blast wounds since October 7."

MSF said that it had witnessed Israeli military vehicles blocking ambulances from reaching healthcare facilities and entering hospitals. Teams were forced to refer patients to hospitals further away, the statement read.

"Hospitals are not targets and must remain safe spaces," MSF stressed. It also called on the Israeli military to stop firing on hospitals. "Medical care must not be impeded."

The death toll in the Israeli-occupied West Bank since October 7 has now risen to 176, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health on Thursday. In addition to those killed, over 2,450 Palestinians in the West Bank have been wounded since October 7, the ministry's report said.

The Palestinians were either killed by Israeli forces or Jewish settlers, the report said.

The United Nation's emergency relief chief highlighted the dire situation in the West Bank on Wednesday, saying "Again, enough is enough." 

"The situation is getting increasingly dire in the West Bank," read a post on X (formerly known as Twitter) from Martin Griffiths, UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) told CNN on Thursday "there has been a significant increase in terrorist attacks in Judea and Samaria with over 550 attempted attacks occurring since the beginning of the war." 

Judea and Samaria are the Jewish biblical names for the West Bank.

"The IDF conducts nightly counterterrorism operations to apprehend suspects, many of them are part of the Hamas terrorist organization. In addition, as part of the security operations in the area, dynamic checkpoints have been put up over different places," the IDF said.
11:18 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

89 Ukrainian citizens evacuated from Gaza Strip, Zelensky says 

From CNN's Mariya Knight in Atlanta

A total of 89 Ukrainian citizens have now been evacuated from the Gaza Strip amid the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas, Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his daily address Thursday. 

The evacuation process began Wednesday, when the first 43 Ukrainians were extracted from the enclave, Zelensky said. This was followed by an additional 46 Ukrainians who were also evacuated on Thursday.

The evacuated Ukrainians are now in Egypt, Zelensky said, adding that efforts to evacuate any remaining Ukrainian nationals from the strip were ongoing.

“It is very important that as many civilians as possible are protected and that the war that is going on in the Middle East does not lead to a full-scale collapse of international stability, " Zelensky said.
"Everyone needs security and peace. We continue this work. A very painstaking and delicate process," he said.

Some context: As global attention shifts to the Middle East, Ukraine's leader has been trying to rally Western support as Russia continues its full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

“These days, our attention is focused on the Middle East,” Zelensky previously told a NATO Parliamentary Assembly in October, also suggesting that Moscow saw an advantage in the Israel-Gaza war.

10:41 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

American diplomats privately warned the Biden administration of growing fury against US in Arab world

From CNN's Priscilla Alvarez and Alex Marquardt

The Biden administration has received stark warnings from American diplomats in the Arab world that its strong support for Israel’s destructive and deadly military campaign in Gaza “is losing us Arab publics for a generation,” according to a diplomatic cable obtained by CNN.

The cable underscores profound concern among American officials about the growing anger against the United States that erupted soon after Israel launched its operations against Hamas, following the militant group’s attacks in Israel on October 7 that left over 1,400 Israelis dead.

“We are losing badly on the messaging battlespace,” reads a Wednesday cable from the US Embassy in Oman, citing conversations with “a wide range of trusted and sober-minded contacts.”

The robust US support for Israel’s actions is being seen, the cable warns, “as material and moral culpability in what they consider to be possible war crimes.”

The cable from the US Embassy in Oman was written by the second-highest US official in Muscat and sent to, among others, the White House’s National Security Council, the CIA and the FBI. While it’s just one cable from a regional embassy, it provides a private snapshot of the alarm over the growing anti-US wave sweeping the Middle East.

CNN has reached out to the State Department for comment.

Some context: President Joe Biden has been under growing pressure domestically and abroad over US support of Israel amid images of destruction in Gaza and the dire humanitarian crisis in the region. While the administration has resisted calls for a ceasefire, officials have worked to ramp up aid going into Gaza and pushed for humanitarian pauses to allow more assistance to flow into the enclave and to allow civilians to flee away from the fighting.

In recent days, US allies in the Arab world have made clear their deep anger at the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

Read more here.

10:35 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

UAE and Qatar leaders stress need for an "immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip"

From CNN’s Becky Anderson in Abu Dhabi and Zeena Saifi in Jerusalem 

The United Arab Emirates president emphasized the need for an “immediate ceasefire" in Gaza to allow for humanitarian access on Thursday, according to a post on X (formerly Twitter). 

UAE President Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan said he has met with Qatar's Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani to “reinforce our nations’ calls for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, unimpeded humanitarian access, and the protection of all civilians.” 

10:21 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

Palestine Red Crescent in Gaza receives 65 humanitarian aid trucks from Egyptian Red Crescent

From CNN’s Abeer Salman and Zeena Saifi in Jerusalem

Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) teams in Gaza have received 65 trucks of humanitarian aid from the Egyptian Red Crescent at the Rafah crossing on Thursday, the agency said.

The trucks contain food, water, medicines and medical supplies, it added.

The number of aid trucks to cross into Gaza since the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7 has now reached 821, which is approximately 41 per day, according to the aid agency. The UN says that number was 455 trucks per day before the war.

Fuel has yet to be allowed to enter Gaza due to Israeli restrictions as officials say they're concerned Hamas would steal the fuel and use it for military purposes.

10:08 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

Israeli incursion kills 14 people in West Bank city of Jenin, Palestinian health ministry says

From CNN's Zeena Saifi

At least 14 Palestinians were killed in the refugee camp Jenin, in the occupied West Bank, following an Israeli military raid, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

The incursion resulted in clashes with Palestinians early Thursday morning, the ministry said. It is not yet clear whether the deceased were civilians or militants.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that it conducted the Jenin raid to “thwart terrorist infrastructure” and to demolish the home of a man who allegedly killed an off-duty Israeli soldier in an August 31 ramming attack.

“Engineering forces uncovered explosive devices intended to harm our forces in the Jenin refugee camp,” the IDF said in a statement. “The commander of the Central Command signed a demolition order for the home of the terrorist who carried out the stampede attack at the Maccabim checkpoint and the Hashmonaim checkpoint.”

Israeli forces also launched at least one drone strike following clashes, according to Israeli Army Radio, the IDF and eyewitnesses speaking to CNN.

Videos obtained by CNN and eyewitness account to CNN depict a heavy military presence in the city. Militants and Israeli forces can be heard exchanging gunfire. At least a dozen armored vehicles can be seen on the city’s roads, and armored bulldozers ripping up streets and destroying a house.

A video obtained by CNN shows leaflets being dropped on the camp following the operation.

A resident shared an image of the leaflet with CNN.

“Camp residents, the IDF’s activities inside the camp were a result of the terrorist operations that you support,” the leaflet read. “The IDF remains here and will return again and again until the terror is completely eliminated. The most excused is he who warns.”

One eyewitness told CNN that ambulances were unable to assist the injured, because Israeli forces surrounded the Ibn Sina hospital and blocked some ambulances from leaving. One video obtained by CNN shows multiple bodies lying motionless on the ground, covered in sheets with ambulance sirens blaring in the background.

Read more on the incursion in Jenin.

9:24 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

Yemen's Houthi rebels claim missile attack on southern Israeli city of Eilat

From CNN’s Eyad Kourdi, Tamar Michaelis, and Mitchell McCluskey

Yemen’s Houthi rebels claimed responsibility for a ballistic missile attack on the southern Israeli city of Eilat on Thursday.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) reported that an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) hit a civilian building in Eilat on Wednesday.

“The identity of the UAV and the details of the incident are under review,” the IDF said.

In a video statement, Houthi military spokesperson Brig. Gen. Yehya Saree claimed Houthi forces had fired “a number of ballistic missiles on a number of various targets” around Eilat.

“The operation was successful and led to direct hits to the chosen targets regardless of the enemy keeping the matter secret, the Yemeni armed forces will continue its operations in support of our people in Gaza and until the Israeli aggression in Gaza stops,” Saree said.

In separate news conferences Thursday evening, IDF spokesperson Daniel Hagari and Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said they were still looking into the incident.

Earlier this week, the Houthis claimed several missile and drone attacks against Israel and warned that further strikes would come. 

On Wednesday, Israel claimed it intercepted a missile launched toward Israel from the Red Sea region by using the Arrow 3 anti-ballistic missile system, according to a joint statement from the Israel Ministry of Defense and the IDF.

The statement claimed the Arrow 3 is "one of the most advanced air and missile defense systems of its kind in the world.” 

Last week, the IDF said it used the Arrow 2 system to successfully intercept a missile fired from the Red Sea area. 

8:32 p.m. ET, November 9, 2023

Israeli defense minister says 4-hour pauses won’t affect war effort

Israel’s Defense Minister Yoav Gallant makes a statement to the media in Tel Aviv, Israel, on October 16.
Israel’s Defense Minister Yoav Gallant makes a statement to the media in Tel Aviv, Israel, on October 16. Jacquelyn Martin/Pool/AFP/Getty Images/FILE

The four-hour periodic pauses by the Israeli military announced Thursday do not amount to a ceasefire and will not affect the fight in Gaza, Israel’s Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said Thursday during a news conference.

He stressed that there would be no ceasefire until the release of the hostages.

“We will not cease the fire or stop fighting as long as we have hostages in Gaza. And as long as we haven’t completed our mission which is to destroy Hamas, and dismantle its military and governance capabilities,” Gallant said.

The comments echo Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who too insisted Thursday that there would be "no ceasefire" without the release of hostages held by Hamas.

Gallant said the daily four-hour pauses by the Israeli military are limited measures to allow civilians to flee. 

“We’re carrying specific moves to allow the exit of Palestinian civilians from Gaza City to the south, to avoid hurting them. These do not affect the fighting,” he said.

 The defense minister said Israel Defense Forces soldiers are operating “in the heart of Gaza City" and are "very close to the Gaza port."

Israeli forces have started using “new methods” to destroy underground tunnels used by Hamas, Gallant said without providing more information.