The Wall Street Journal has revealed that the scale of Israeli bombardment in Gaza is comparable to some of the most devastating warfare in modern history. The revelation disclosed that Israel had dropped 29,000 bombs, munitions, and shells on the besieged enclave by mid-December. The impact of this intense barrage of firepower has resulted in the destruction or damage of nearly 70 per cent of homes in Gaza.

The Gaza Health Ministry reported 165 Palestinians killed and 250 injured in Israeli attacks in the past 24 hours.

Israeli forces detained 14 individuals in overnight raids in the occupied West Bank. Meanwhile, South Africa has initiated war crimes proceedings against Israel at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), accusing the nation of committing genocide in Gaza.

The recent air raid near the European Hospital in Khan Younis has drawn international attention, with five reported killed and numerous women and children injured. The city has recently seen heavy Israel aerial bombardment and artillery shelling.

Hamas has accused the United States administration of complicity in what it terms a “war of extermination.” The US has been supplying Israel with various advanced weapons, including missiles and aircraft.

On Friday, the Biden administration approved the transfer of US$147.5 million worth of 155mm artillery shells and related equipment to Israel, utilising emergency authority to bypass the standard congressional review process. This comes at a time Israel has further escalated its intense bombing campaign in the Gaza Strip, killing hundreds of Palestinian civilians, mostly women and children, on a daily basis, with no end to the onslaught in sight.

Israel has killed 21,672 Palestinians and wounded 56,165 injured since 7 October. More than 8,000 Palestinians are believed to be buried under the rubble of destroyed homes and buildings.

As Israel continues with its relentless attacks, Gaza’s Supreme Council for Sports says that hundreds of sports players have been killed, and sports facilities have been targeted and transformed into detention centres. The Supreme Council for Sports in Gaza has issued a global appeal, calling on the international community and sports institutions to intervene and put an end to Israel’s “genocidal war” against Gaza. Observers say it is highly unlikely that any international sports institution will even heed the Palestinian appeal, as most continue to censure athletes even for the slightest display of sympathy towards the Palestinians.

Meanwhile, the UN Women regional director for the Arab States, Susanne Mikhail Eldhagen, has issued an urgent appeal for assistance to female-led households. Eldhagen pointed out the immediate need for essential supplies such as food, winter clothing, and hygiene supplies for these households.

In collaboration with the World Food Programme (WFP) and other organizations, UN Women is engaged in providing direct support to over 14,000 female-headed households. This assistance is expected to reach more than 70,000 family members who find themselves in desperate need due to the ongoing crisis.