Israel live updates: Israel cuts off Gaza in ‘total siege’

(NEW YORK) — At least 700 people have died and more than 2,300 others have been injured in Israel after the militant group Hamas fired a barrage of rockets from the neighboring Gaza Strip in an unprecedented incursion on Saturday, Israeli authorities said.

Palestinian militants fired at least 2,200 rockets toward Israel and as many as 1,000 Hamas fighters took part in the surprise attack, taking at least 100 Israeli citizens and soldiers hostage, according to Israeli officials. Hamas claimed at least 5,000 rockets were fired, all landing in southern and central Israel.

The Israel Defense Forces has since declared “a state of alert for war” and launched a retaliatory attack with fighter jets on Gaza, a 140-square-mile territory where 2 million Palestinians have lived under a blockade imposed by neighboring Israel and Egypt since Hamas seized power in 2007.

At least 493 people have died and another 2,751 have been injured in Gaza, Palestinian authorities said. Unlike Israel, the Gaza Strip has no air raid sirens or bomb shelters.

Here’s how the news is developing. All times Eastern:

Oct 09, 7:04 AM EDT
Dozens of Palestinian children among those killed in Gaza, advocacy group says

At least 33 Palestinian children have been killed in the Gaza Strip since Saturday morning as Israel continues its retaliatory airstrikes, according to the advocacy group Defense for Children Palestine.

-ABC News’ Joe Simonetti

Oct 09, 6:49 AM EDT
Hamas claims 4 Israeli hostages were killed in airstrikes

Four Israeli hostages were killed alongside their militant captors in the Gaza Strip by Israeli airstrikes on Sunday night and Monday morning, according to Abu Ubaida, spokesman for the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas.

There was no official confirmation on the hostage deaths from the Israeli side.

-ABC News’ Joe Simonetti

Oct 09, 6:40 AM EDT
Fresh rockets fired toward Jerusalem, Tel Aviv

The sound of rocket alert sirens rang out in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and other Israeli cities on Monday morning.

One of the fresh rockets launched on Monday by Hamas militants from the neighboring Gaza Strip landed near Ben Gurion International Airport in southern Israel.

Several people were reportedly injured by rockets in the southern Israeli cities of Ashdod and Ashkelon on Monday.

-ABC News’ Joe Simonetti

Oct 09, 5:59 AM EDT
Israel cuts off Gaza in ‘total siege’

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant announced Monday that he has ordered a “total siege” of the neighboring Gaza Strip, allowing no food, fuel or electricity to enter the Hamas-ruled territory.

“We are fighting barbaric terrorists and we will act accordingly,” Gallant said.

Since Saturday’s surprise attack on Israel launched by Hamas militants, Israeli forces have struck back. Hundreds of buildings and homes have been destroyed in Gaza, leaving more than 123,000 people displaced, according to the United Nations.

Unlike Israel, the Gaza Strip has no air raid sirens or bomb shelters. Over 73,000 people are currently sheltering in schools, according to the U.N.

Meanwhile, hospitals in Gaza are struggling to cope with the number of casualties, the U.N. said. At least 493 people have died and another 2,751 have been injured there, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

-ABC News’ Joe Simonetti

Oct 09, 4:39 AM EDT
Fighting has stopped in southern Israel, IDF says

The Israel Defense Forces said Monday that fighting with militants in southern Israel has stopped and it has retaken control of all communities around the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

Israeli soldiers have successfully blocked the holes in the border fence separating Gaza from Israel, which are now secured by tanks on the ground and fighter jets above, according to the IDF.

-ABC News’ Joe Simonetti

Oct 09, 4:22 AM EDT
70 militants infiltrated Be’eri kibbutz overnight, IDF says

A spokesperson for the Israel Defense Forces said Monday morning that 70 militants had infiltrated Be’eri kibbutz in southern Israel overnight.

Speaking to Israeli newspaper Haaretz, the IDF spokesperson said they suspect there is a tunnel in the area of Be’eri, which the military has been unable to wrest from the Hamas militant group. The kibbutz is located near Israel’s southeastern border with the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

The IDF is still gathering information on the Israeli civilians and soldiers being held hostage in Gaza, and not all families have been updated yet, according to the spokesperson.

-ABC News’ Clark Bentson

Oct 09, 1:17 AM EDT
IDF claims to have hit 500 militant targets in Gaza Strip

For an operation now dubbed “Swords of Iron,” the Israel Defense Forces said Monday that it had struck 500 Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in the Gaza Strip.

The attacks were carried out through the use of jets, helicopters and other aircraft, according to the IDF.

The IDF said seven of Hamas’ command centers were struck in the mission.

-ABC News’ Bruno Nota

Oct 09, 12:40 AM EDT
Iranian Mission to UN says Iran had no involvement in Hamas attack on Israel

An Iranian official at the UN denied that Iran had any involvement in Hamas’ attack on Israel.

Israeli officials, including President Isaac Herzog, had claimed on Saturday that Iran helped coordinate the attacks on Israel.

On Sunday, however, Iran’s Mission to the UN, denied the claims.

“We emphatically stand in unflinching support of Palestine; however, we are not involved in Palestine’s response, as it is taken solely by Palestine itself.,” the Iranian Mission to the UN said in a statement late Sunday. “The resolute measures taken by Palestine constitute a wholly legitimate defense against seven decades of oppressive occupation and heinous crimes committed by the illegitimate Zionist regime.”

A U.S. official said Saturday it was “too early” to tell if Iran had involvement in the attacks.

“We are going to be looking at that very closely,” a senior administration official said.

-ABC News’ Kirit Radia

Oct 08, 10:41 PM EDT
Israel attacks targeted locations on Gaza Strip: IDF

Israeli Defense Forces attacked the Gaza Strip early Monday morning local time, the IDF said in a series of posts on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter.

The IDF attacked a building where it said Hamas operatives were and several operational headquarters of the organization, the IDF said in the posts.

-ABC News’ Ellie Kaufman

Oct 08, 10:30 PM EDT
UN Security Council emergency meeting fails to condemn attack on Israel

An emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council failed to condemn the Hamas attacks on Israel Sunday evening.

Deputy U.S. Ambassador the U.N. Robert Wood said the situation was “still fluid” and “very dangerous.”

“What is important now is that the international community needs to show its solidarity with Israel. We have Israel’s back fully as the United States, and the condemnation of Hamas needs to continue until they end this violent terrorist activity against the Israeli people,” Wood said after the meeting.

-ABC News’ Ellie Kaufman

Oct 09, 12:24 AM EDT
At least 4 Americans among 700 dead in Israel

At least four American citizens were killed in the attacks in Israel over the weekend, senior administration officials told top House lawmakers on a call Sunday evening, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter.

That figure could rise in the coming days, the Biden administration officials told Congress. The administration is also still investigating unconfirmed reports of American citizens being taken hostage by Hamas.

Participants on the call included senior members of the relevant House committees and party leaders — including Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-North Carolina, the temporary House speaker, two sources told ABC News.

As previously reported, Senate leaders will receive a similar briefing tonight.

–ABC News’ Ben Siegel

Oct 08, 8:59 PM EDT
Senate briefing on current situation in Israel tonight

Senate leadership, chairs and ranking members of relevant committees will receive an unclassified briefing on the situation in Israel Sunday night at 9 p.m. ET, a Senate source told ABC News.

The chairs and ranking members from the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Committee on Armed Services are among those who will be briefed.

Oct 08, 10:46 PM EDT
‘Several’ Americans killed in Hamas attacks on Israel

American citizens were killed in the attacks on Israel, U.S. officials confirmed Sunday.

“We can confirm the deaths of several U.S. citizens. We extend our deepest condolences to the victims and to the families of all those affected,” a U.S. official told ABC News in a statement.

–ABC News’ MaryAlice Parks, Shannon Crawford

Oct 09, 12:25 AM EDT
The world’s largest pilot’s union says its airlines have suspended flight operations to Israel and evacuated personnel

The Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) — which represents more than 74,000 pilots between 42 US and Canadian airlines, including majors like JetBlue, Delta, and United — told members today its “working diligently” with carriers that fly to Israel to “ensure the safety of each of [its] members.”

-ABC News’ Amanda Maile

Oct 08, 4:38 PM EDT
US has for decades had vast weapons stockpile in Israel

The White House has pledged assistance to Israel in responding to Hamas’ attack — and America has for decades maintained a vast pre-positioned military stockpile inside Israel.

First established in the wake of the Yom Kippur War of 1973, when it took time for the U.S. to send supplies to Israel, the munitions are available in case of emergencies.

It’s possible that Israel will ask the U.S. to tap into this stockpile, which contains weapons systems including tanks and ammunition stored in warehouses.

While not especially well known to the public, the supplies got some exposure earlier this year when the U.S. planned to use them in order to send artillery to Ukraine in responding to Russia’s invasion.

-ABC News’ Luis Martinez

Oct 08, 3:54 PM EDT
Hundreds killed at music festival in Israel that came under attack

Israeli rescue service Zaka said at least 260 bodies were removed from the venue of the music festival in southern Israel that came under a Hamas attack.

Oct 08, 3:54 PM EDT
United says Tel Aviv flights will remain suspended

United Airlines said Sunday its Tel Aviv flights will remain suspended until conditions allow for them to resume.

The airline operated two scheduled flights out of TLV late Saturday and early Sunday.

“The safety of our customers and employees is our top priority,” United said.

-ABC News’ Amanda Maile

Oct 07, 5:54 PM EDT
High-ranking IDF commander killed in action, military says

A high-ranking Israel Defense Forces commander was killed in action Saturday, the military said.

Col. Jonathan Steinberg, 42, the commander of the Nahal Brigade, was killed during a confrontation with Hamas, IDF said.

Oct 07, 5:49 PM EDT
United Hatzalah says it has treated nearly 1,000 injured people in Israel

United Hatzalah, a community-based volunteer EMS organization, said so far it has treated nearly 1,000 people for “various injuries” in southern and central Israel.

The organization said it has also transported an unspecified number of patients to hospitals in the regions via ambulance and helicopter.

Oct 07, 5:12 PM EDT
At least 50 Israelis being held hostage: Israeli Command

At least 50 Israelis are currently being held hostage by Hamas, according to Israeli Command. That number may change as Israeli forces get a handle on the situation on the ground.

Oct 07, 5:11 PM EDT
Blinken calls on Palestinian leadership to ‘condemn’ attacks

During a call with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, Secretary of State Antony Blinken called on the region’s leadership to “condemn” the Hamas attacks, according to a readout from the State Department.

“The Secretary reiterated the United States’ unequivocal condemnation of the terrorist attacks by Hamas against Israel, and called on all leadership in the region to condemn them,” State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said in a statement. “The Secretary urged the Palestinian Authority to continue and enhance steps to restore calm and stability in the West Bank.”

Earlier Saturday, Abbas said his people have the right to defend themselves against the “terror of settlers and occupation troops,” according to Reuters.

Oct 07, 5:01 PM EDT
Israeli ambassador to US calls attacks ‘war crimes’

In a strongly worded statement, Israel’s ambassador to the U.S. labeled the Hamas attacks as “war crimes” and vowed that Israel will fight back.

“Those of our enemies who believe that Israel is weak because of its internal debate have totally miscalculated. When under attack, Israelis close ranks and join together in fighting for Israel’s self-defense,” Michael Herzog declared. “This is war. We will fight to win and deter the terrorists from any future attacks.”

The ambassador also directly blamed Iran for the surprise attack, saying, “Hamas is a U.S. and E.U. designated terror organization and a close ally of Iran. Iran’s hands are evidently behind the scenes, leading the so-called Axis of Resistance to Israel’s existence.”

-ABC News’ Shannon K. Crawford

Oct 07, 4:43 PM EDT
Israel will take ‘vengeance for this black day’: Netanyahu

Prime Minister Netanyahu said Israel will “reach every place Hamas is hiding” during an address late Saturday and urged “Gaza’s people to leave those places now.”

Israel will take “vengeance for this black day,” he added.

At least 300 people have been killed and thousands injured since Hamas launched its surprise attack. The Palestinian Health Ministry said 232 are dead and another 1,790 injured in Gaza. According to the Israeli Health Ministry, over 100 people are dead and over 900 others are injured — though multiple Israeli news outlets are reporting at least 250 Israelis have been killed and another 1,500 injured.

Israeli army spokesman Richard Hech also reported “severe” hostage situations were ongoing in Kibbutz Be’eri and Ofakim, with an unknown number of Israelis being held hostage.

Israel said the assault started at sunrise, when Hamas attacked 22 sites bordering Gaza by breaching some border fences.

Oct 07, 3:11 PM EDT
Biden administration to remain in ‘constant contact’ with leaders in the region

President Joe Biden said he spoke with Jordanian King Abdullah II, members of the U.S. Congress and directed his national security team to remain in contact with their Israeli counterparts.

“I’ve also directed my team to remain in constant contact with leaders throughout the region including Egypt, Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Oman, UAE, as well as our European partners and the Palestinian Authority,” Biden said.

Oct 07, 2:59 PM EDT
Biden says support for Israel’s security is ‘rock solid and unwavering’

President Joe Biden delivered remarks from the White House on Saturday expressing U.S. support for Israel in light of Hamas’ attack.

“We will not ever fail to have their back,” Biden said.

“Israel has the right to defend itself and his people full stop. There is never a justification for terrorist attacks and my administration’s support for Israel security is rock solid and unwavering. Let me say this as clearly as I can. This is not a moment for any party hostile to Israel to exploit these attacks to seek advantage. The world is watching,” Biden said.

Oct 07, 2:57 PM EDT
Blinken speaks with Israeli president, foreign minister

Secretary of State Antony Blinken “reaffirmed” the U.S.’ solidarity with Israel during a call with Israeli President Isaac Herzog and Foreign Minister Eli Cohen, a State Department spokesperson said.

“Secretary Blinken reiterated his condolences for the victims of the terrorist attacks against Israel and condemned those attacks in the strongest terms,” the spokesperson, Matthew Miller, said in a statement. “Secretary Blinken also discussed measures to bolster Israel’s security. The Secretary underscored the United States’ unwavering support for Israel’s right to defend itself.”

Oct 07, 2:27 PM EDT
Biden to speak at 2:30 p.m.

President Joe Biden is set to deliver remarks at 2:30 p.m. on the attacks in Israel from the State Dining Room, according to the White House.

-ABC News’ Fritz Farrow

Oct 07, 2:13 PM EDT
US embassy in Israel issues security alert, tells Americans in Gaza to check pathway to Egypt

The U.S. Embassy in Israel issued a security alert on Saturday warning Americans in Gaza seeking to flee to check the status of the Rafah Crossing into Egypt and to remain vigilant.

“U.S. citizens are reminded to remain vigilant and take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness as security incidents, including mortar and rocket fire, often take place without warning. U.S. citizens in Gaza who wish to leave and can do so safely are advised to check the status of the Rafah Crossing into Egypt,” the embassy alerted.

“U.S. Embassy personnel are still currently sheltering in place. U.S. government personnel continue to be prohibited from travel to Gaza and areas within seven miles of Gaza,” the embassy said.

-ABC News’ Fritz Farrow and MaryAlice Parks

Oct 07, 1:23 PM EDT
UN to hold private meeting on the unfolding Israeli-Palestinian crisis

The United Nations will hold a private meeting on Sunday to discuss the unfolding Israeli-Palestinian crisis.

Oct 07, 1:17 PM EDT
Over 300 dead, thousands injured in Gaza, Israel, authorities say

The death toll continues to climb with over 300 people reported dead in Gaza and Israel.

The Palestinian Health Authority said 198 are dead and 1,610 others are injured in Gaza. According to the Israeli Health Ministry over 100 people are dead and over 900 others are injured.

Just before sundown in a western Gaza City, a massive explosion and fireball were reported after Israel warplanes hit a high-rise apartment complex. The Gaza Interior Ministry said the building housed approximately 100 families.

Oct 07, 1:00 PM EDT
Defense Secretary Austin spoke with Israeli counterpart

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin spoke with Israeli Minister of Defense Yoav Gallant on Saturday to convey his condolences.

“Secretary Austin made clear to Minister Gallant his ironclad support for the Israeli Defense Forces and the Israeli people. He reaffirmed that the Department’s commitment to Israel’s security and its absolute right to defend itself from acts of terrorism is unwavering. Secretary Austin has directed his team to ensure that DoD is closely consulting with all of our Allies and partners who share a commitment to peace and oppose terrorism. Secretary Austin will continue to consult with Minister Gallant in the coming days and weeks to ensure that Israel has the support it needs,” the Pentagon said in a statement.

-ABC News’ Matt Seyler

Oct 07, 12:38 PM EDT
Police in New York, Beverly Hills increase patrols in sensitive areas

Police in New York, where there are locations sensitive to both Israeli and Palestinian interests, are adjusting patrols in response to the situation in Israel.

“The NYPD’s Counterterrorism and Intelligence Division consistently work at a level of high alert. When events from around the world could possibly affect NYC or we get Intel on a threat to NYC, we always increase our presence around houses of worship and certain areas when these conflicts arise,” the NYPD said in a statement.

The Beverly Hills Police Department also said it increased security and patrols around Jewish institutions in the City and continues to work closely with law enforcement partners in the region to ensure public safety.

Law enforcement and Homeland Security officials will be assessing the potential for residual violence in the U.S.

Increased security around Jewish facilities and on university campuses — particularly where there is a history of confrontational interactions — is to be expected. Increased attention is expected to be paid to potential cyber threats and online activities intended to inspire violence by Iran, Hezbollah and other extremists threat actors.

-ABC News’ Aaron Katersky and Alex Stone

Oct 07, 12:21 PM EDT
United, American, Delta airlines to suspend Israel operations

United Airlines, American Airlines and Delta Airlines announced they will suspend operations to Israel Saturday night following unrest in the region. After two departures scheduled for Saturday, United’s future operations will be suspended until conditions allow them to resume, the airline said.

“The safety of our customers and crew is our top priority. We are closely monitoring the situation and we are adjusting flight schedules as required,” the carrier told ABC News.

American Airlines said it will temporarily suspended operations to and from Tel Aviv and will continue to monitor the situation, adjusting its operations as needed.

“American Airlines has temporarily suspended operations to and from Tel Aviv, Israel (TLV) [Saturday] and [Sunday], and has issued a travel alert providing additional flexibility to customers whose travel plans are affected. We will continue to monitor the situation with safety and security top of mind and will adjust our operation as needed,” American Airlines said in a statement.

Delta Air Lines has canceled scheduled flights in and out of Tel Aviv this weekend. The airline said its working to “safely transport Delta people back to the U.S. and will work with the U.S. government as needed to assist with the repatriation of U.S. citizens who want to return home.”

-ABC News’ Amanda Maile and Sam Sweeney

Oct 07, 11:19 AM EDT
Biden speaks with Netanyahu, offers ‘all appropriate means of support’

President Joe Biden spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, telling him that the U.S. “condemns” Hamas’ assault on Israel.

“I made clear to Prime Minister Netanyahu that we stand ready to offer all appropriate means of support to the Government and people of Israel. Terrorism is never justified. Israel has a right to defend itself and its people. The United States warns against any other party hostile to Israel seeking advantage in this situation. My Administration’s support for Israel’s security is rock solid and unwavering,” Biden said in a statement.

Biden also extended his condolences for lives lost and wished those wounded a “swift recovery.”

“My team and I are tracking this situation closely, and I will remain in close touch with Prime Minister Netanyahu,” Biden said.

Oct 07, 10:25 AM EDT
Blinken says US condemns Hamas’ attack on Israel

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken issued a statement condemning Hamas’ attack on Israel, saying the U.S. will “remain in close contact with our Israel partners.”

“The United States unequivocally condemns the appalling attacks by Hamas terrorists against Israel, including civilians and civilian communities. There is never any justification for terrorism. We stand in solidarity with the government and people of Israel, and extend our condolences for the Israeli lives lost in these attacks,” Blinken said in a statement.

-ABC News’ Shannon Crawford

Oct 07, 10:23 AM EDT
Death toll, number of injured rise after Hamas fires rockets, Israel declares war

The death toll has risen after Hamas fired rockets into Israel from Gaza in a surprise attack and Israel declared war.

According to Israeli officials, at least 40 people have died in Israel and more than 700 people have been injured. The Palestinian Health Ministry said 160 people were killed in Gaza and over a 1,000 others were injured.

According to Al Jazeera, Israeli forces have surrounded a house in the Israeli settlement of Ofakim and negotiations are underway with Palestinian fighters who are allegedly holding hostages. According to the Jerusalem Post, dozens of hostages are being by Hamas in the Kibbutz Be’eru in southern Israel.

Oct 07, 9:50 AM EDT
Biden briefed on attacks in Israel

President Joe Biden was briefed Saturday “on the appalling Hamas terrorist attacks in Israel,” according to the White House.

“Senior national security officials briefed the President this morning on the appalling Hamas terrorist attacks in Israel. The President will continue to receive updates and White House officials remain in close contact with Israeli partners,” the White House said in a statement.

-ABC News’ Fritz Farrow

Oct 07, 8:58 AM EDT
Defense secretary says US will ‘work to ensure that Israel has what it needs’

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin released a statement saying he is “closely monitoring” the situation in Israel and extended his condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives.

“Over the coming days the Department of Defense will work to ensure that Israel has what it needs to defend itself and protect civilians from indiscriminate violence and terrorism,” Austin said.

Separately, a U.S. defense official said that Austin had a call with his team Saturday morning, including U.S. Centcom Commander Gen. Eric Kurilla. Israel falls under Centcom’s area of responsibility.

-ABC News’ Luis Martinez

Oct 07, 8:01 AM EDT
Netanyahu says Israel is at ‘war’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made a video statement on social media, saying simply, “We are at war. We will win,” in his first comments, made in Hebrew, after the attack.

“Citizens of Israel, we are at war, not in an operation or in rounds, but at war. This morning, Hamas launched a murderous surprise attack against the State of Israel and its citizens. We have been in this since the early morning hours. I convened the heads of the security establishment and ordered – first of all – to clear out the communities that have been infiltrated by terrorists,” Netanyahu said. “This currently is being carried out. At the same time, I have ordered an extensive mobilization of reserves and that we return fire of a magnitude that the enemy has not known. The enemy will pay an unprecedented price. In the meantime, I call on the citizens of Israel to strictly adhere to the directives of the IDF and Home Front Command. We are at war and we will win it.”

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