Israel-Gaza updates: US Embassy says American injured by Hezbollah rocket fire

IDF official admits insurgency will be long and difficult.

Last Updated: July 4, 2024, 2:06 PM EDT

As the Israel-Hamas war continues, efforts to secure the release of hostages taken by the terrorist organization are ongoing, and Israeli forces have launched an assault in Khan Younis in southern Gaza.

Jul 04, 2024, 2:06 PM EDT

Biden speaks with Netanyahu on efforts to finalize cease-fire deal: White House

President Joe Biden spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday, a White House official said.

Vice President Kamala Harris also joined the call, which wrapped early Thursday afternoon, the official said.

The leaders discussed "ongoing efforts to finalize a ceasefire deal together with the release of hostages," as well as "the recent response received from Hamas," according to a readout of their call from the White House.

Fire and smoke billows after rockets launched from southern Lebanon hit areas in northern Israel on July 4, 2024.
Jalaa Marey/AFP via Getty Images

The call came after Netanyahu's office announced Thursday that Israel had received Hamas' latest cease-fire proposal from U.S., Qatari and Egyptian mediators and was "examining" the proposal.

During the call, Biden "welcomed" Netanyahu's decision to "authorize his negotiators to engage with U.S., Qatari, and Egyptian mediators in an effort to close out the deal," according to the readout.

Even as Biden tries to stave off criticism for his debate performance in the U.S., he is also trying to tamp down the mounting conflict between Israel and Hezbollah on the border with Lebanon. Hundreds of rockets were fired into northern Israel on Thursday, though no one was seriously injured.

During the call with Netanyahu, Biden "reaffirmed his ironclad commitment to Israel’s security including in the face of threats from Iranian-backed terrorist groups such as Lebanese Hezbollah," the readout stated.

-ABC News' Molly Nagle

Jul 04, 2024, 6:01 AM EDT

Hezbollah fires 200 rockets, drones toward Israel

Hezbollah militants said they fired more than 200 rockets and drones toward Israel on Thursday.

Sirens and alerts began sounding throughout northern Israel early on Thursday, officials said.

As the sirens began "numerous projectiles and suspicious aerial targets crossed from Lebanon into Israeli territory," the Israel Defense Forces said.

Smoke billows after a hit from a rocket fired from southern Lebanon over the Upper Galilee region in northern Israel on July 4, 2024.
Jalaa Marey/AFP via Getty Images

Israel's Iron Dome defenses intercepted "several" of those projectiles, including uncrewed drones, the IDF said.

"As a result of UAVs and shrapnel from the interceptions falling in the area, fires broke out in a number of areas in northern Israel," the IDF said. "The Israel Fire and Rescue Services are currently operating to extinguish the fires."

-ABC News' Joe Simonetti and Kevin Shalvey

Jul 03, 2024, 1:17 PM EDT

Israel assassinates highest ranking Hezbollah commander since Oct. 8

Israel assassinated the commander of Hezbollah's Aziz Unit, based in southern Lebanon, Israel claimed and Hezbollah acknowledged.

Muhammad Ni’Mah Nasser is one of the most senior commanders killed since Hezbollah began firing at Israel in solidarity with Gaza on Oct. 8.

Hezbollah has responded with around 100 rockets in the last three hours, according to the IDF. No major damage has been reported.

Both sides have said they are ready for war and that they are ready to ink a peace deal brokered by U.S. envoy Amos Hochstein. A senior Hezbollah official said this week it can only sign the deal after Israel reaches a cease-fire with Hamas in Gaza.

-ABC News' Matt Gutman

Jul 02, 2024, 4:33 PM EDT

European Gaza Hospital now empty following evacuation orders: WHO

All patients and medical staff have left European Gaza Hospital in southern Gaza, following evacuation orders from the Israel Defense Forces in Khan Younis, the World Health Organization said Tuesday.

The hospital, which had 320 patients, is "now completely empty," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.

"It is devastating to see the 650-bed-capacity hospital out of service at a time when access to health care is urgently needed," he said in a statement while calling on the hospital to be made operational "immediately."

Most patients were being referred to Nasser Medical Complex, which is now at full capacity and facing a shortage of medical supplies, the WHO said.

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