Men walk on Nov. 13, 2023 along the border with the Gaza Strip in southern Israel amid ongoing battles between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas. (Credit: Fadel Senna/AFP)


Israel fires two missiles next to a group of journalists in southern Lebanon, minor injuries; UNRWA fuel supplies run dry in Gaza: Day 38 of the Israel-Hamas war

What you need to know

Hezbollah and Israel continue to clash on the border, injuring civilians on both sides.

32 patients and babies at al-Shifa Hospital have died since the power cut at the hospital on Nov. 11.

The official Gaza death toll remains at 11,078 as the health ministry is unable to give an accurate update due to the intensity of the bombing.

22:14 Beirut Time

Thank you for following our LIVE coverage of Day 38 of the Hamas-Israel war.

You can read a summary of today's events here.

We'll be back tomorrow with more news updates and analysis, right here at L'Orient Today.

22:12 Beirut Time

US President Joe Biden urges Israel to protect al-Shifa hospital as heavy fighting between Israeli forces and Hamas rage around the complex, AFP reports.

"It's my hope and expectation that there will be less intrusive action relative to the hospital," Biden tells reporters in the Oval Office when asked if he had expressed concerns to Israel on the issue.

"The hospital must be protected," Biden states, and adds that he is "in contact with the Israelis" on the matter.

21:54 Beirut Time

A surgeon from Doctors Without Borders (MSF) says the conditions in al-Shifa Hospital are "inhuman." The largest hospital in Gaza remains under siege as 27 adults and seven babies have died since the power was cut on Saturday.

Read more here.

21:50 Beirut Time

Two people were killed in an Israeli strike in the South Lebanon border village of Ainata (Nabatieh), the Risala scout who hospitalized the two casualties said in a statement earlier today.

19:59 Beirut Time

Israeli army Chief of Staff Herzl Halevi says the army "is preparing extensive action plans for the north," adding "our mission is to bring security."

"The security situation will not be abandoned in such a way that residents of northern Israel will not feel safe to return to their homes," he said during a situation assessment at the Northern Command, Haaretz reports.

19:56 Beirut Time

Gaza's media office has updated the death toll in Gaza to 11,240 people — 4,630 of which are children — since the beginning of the war on Oct. 7.

19:50 Beirut Time

The Knesset passed an amendment to a law allowing Israel to declare foreign citizens terrorists even if they are not previously declared such by an authorized body outside the country, reports Haaretz.

The law states that the defense minister will be able to independently and immediately declare a foreign citizen a terrorist. The defense minister previously could only do so if an authorized body outside of Israel had labelled the individual as such.

According to the amendment, the law's current definition of terrorist will be expanded to include individuals involved in financing activities of terrorist organizations or supporting it even if that person is not a member of the organization.

19:42 Beirut Time

Head of Hamas Ismael Haniyeh and Lebanese caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati spoke on the phone earlier today and affirmed “the rejection of the attempts to defeat any national rights for the Palestinian people while refusing any aggression on brotherly Lebanon,” Hamas says in a statement.

19:34 Beirut Time

Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere urges Israel to release the full tax transfer it is withholding from the Palestinian Authority (PA), saying the payment is "critical" for the welfare of the Palestinian population, Reuters reports.

Norway is the chair of the international donor group to the Palestinian territories, known as the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee. It was a facilitator in the 1992–93 talks between Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization, leading to the Oslo Accords.

On Nov. 2, Israel said it would proceed with a tax revenue transfer to the PA in the Israeli-occupied West Bank but would withhold funds bound for Hamas-ruled Gaza, where the PA helps cover public sector wages and pay for electricity.

Israel's decision came after an internal cabinet debate over whether to make the transfer amid the ongoing war with Hamas.

On Nov. 6, the PA said it would not accept a partial transfer from Israel. It is estimated to spend some 30 percent of its budget in Gaza, where it also pays for medicine and social assistance programs.

19:20 Beirut Time

The Israeli army struck rocket-launching facilities in southern Lebanon and targeted a “terrorist” that participated in said launching, Arabic  Spokesperson for the Israeli army Avichay Adrae says on X. Adrae adds that Israeli tanks targeted a “cell” that tried to launch anti-tank missiles at the Israeli village of Shtula earlier today.

The spokesperson also says that earlier today, missiles were launched at several areas in northern Israeli and that in response, Israel fired missiles towards the origins of the fire. Earlier today, the outskirts of the south Lebanon village of Khiam (Nabatieh) was shelled, a security source and residents of the village told L’Orient Today.

19:05 Beirut Time

"We escaped death," exclaims Abelkader Qadoura, a cameraman who was forced to flee without any of his belongings on Friday from al-Shifa Hospital, where tens of thousands of displaced people have sought refuge. He testifies for L'Orient-Le Jour.

18:46 Beirut Time

Flames erupt next to a press car following an Israeli missile strike meters from where a group of journalists were reporting in Lebanon's southern border village of Yaroun today. (Credit: AFP)

18:38 Beirut Time

This picture taken today from a position along the border with the Gaza Strip in southern Israel shows Israeli troops crossing a barbed wire fence amid their ongoing ground invasion of the besieged strip. (Credit: Fadel Senna/AFP)

18:19 Beirut Time

The Palestine Red Crescent Society released a report this afternoon saying they are receiving hundreds of calls to their emergency line regarding the injured and the buried, but are unable to send rescue teams due to the ongoing Israeli ground invasion.

The report states: "Neither ambulances nor civil defense were able to reach them, as [the] Israeli Occupation Forces' ground invasion continues in the north governorates of the Gaza Strip, preventing ambulances from access, and targeting anyone who tries to move there, resulting in tens of bodies killed in the streets."

The full report lists exactly where military operations have prevented access to PRCS's rescue teams.

17:57 Beirut Time

Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen says that his office recognizes an increase in political pressure on Israel to work towards a cease-fire in the Hamas war. Cohen estimates that Israel has between two and three weeks before international pressure on Israel ratchets up.

"From a political point of view, we recognize that Israel has come under more pressure," Cohen says. "The pressure is not very high, but it is increasing."

He adds that "in conversations I hold with foreign ministers, they emphasize the humanitarian issue [in Gaza], the aspect of their identification and shock from the Oct. 7 massacre is reduced. There are also those who request – not publicly – to work towards a cease-fire."

17:32 Beirut Time

Hezbollah announces that at 4:30 pm, it targeted an Israeli position facing the border village of Yaroun and say they "directly hit the target." Earlier, two missiles were fired from Israel and landed in the village of Yaroun meters away from where a group of journalists were reporting. One of the journalists, an Al Jazeera photographer, was lightly wounded.

17:19 Beirut Time

Al Jazeera photographer Issam Mawasi has been lightly wounded as a result of two consecutive Israeli missile strikes in the town of Yaroun in southern Lebanon. The missiles landed meters away from where a group of journalists was stationed.

16:56 Beirut Time

 Jordan's King Abdullah rejects any plans by Israel to occupy parts of Gaza or to create security zones within the enclave, Jordanian state media says, according to a Reuters report.

The king was quoted as telling senior politicians that there could be "no military or security solution" to the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

He says the war-ravaged enclave of Gaza should not be severed by Israel from the other Palestinian Territories.

16:47 Beirut Time

Hezbollah announces the killing of Ali Mahdi Safedine, a fighter from the village of Halbatta in Baalbeck. As usual, Hezbollah did not specify the date or place of the death. This brings Hezbollah's death toll to 74 people, since the beginning of the border fighting on Oct. 9, as confirmed with our correspondent in the south.

16:01 Beirut Time

Two rockets from Israel land a few meters away from journalists' positions in the border village of Yaroun, live footage from local TV channel MTV shows. L'Orient-Le Jour could not immediately confirm if there were any casualties.

15:59 Beirut Time

 The UN Palestinian refugee agency's fuel depot in Gaza has run dry and within a few days UNRWA will no longer be able to resupply hospitals, remove sewage, and provide drinking water, Reuters reports, quoting the agency's chief.

Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini, told donors that UNRWA had been slowly emptying a fuel depot on the Israeli border containing strategic reserves.

A request to the Israeli military to replenish it went unanswered, he said. "That reservoir is now empty."

"If we project out a couple of days, by Nov. 14 this will severely impact ambulances and major hospital operations. Some of [the hospitals] have a bit of solar but it is marginal, so those hospitals cease functioning," he said.

UNRWA is sheltering nearly 800,000 people, or about half of the total population of Gazans who fled their homes since the Israeli bombardments began over a month ago.

15:47 Beirut Time

Hezbollah said in a statement that its fighters targeted at "3:00 pm...the Ramtha site in the occupied Lebanese Shebaa Farms with appropriate weapons, causing direct injuries."

15:28 Beirut Time

The General Commissioner of the Islamic Mission Scouts (affiliated with Amal Movement), told L'Orient Today's correspondent in southern Lebanon that they have "transferred two injured individuals to the hospital without knowing their condition," after their house was shelled by Israel in the southern town of Ainata.

15:24 Beirut Time

Smoke rises following Israeli artilley shelling on the village of Beit Lif, along Lebanon's southern border with northern Israel on Nov. 13, 2023, amid the ongoing battles between Israel and the Palestinian group Hamas. (Credit: AFP)

15:15 Beirut Time

An Israeli power company worker died Monday after being injured by an anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) fired by Hezbollah from southern Lebanon into northern Israel the previous day, the employee's company said according to AFP.

The worker was working in the Dovev area of northern Israel when he was injured when Hezbollah fired an ATGM into the area which injured six on Sunday. This came amid heightened escalations between Hezbollah and Israel which have traded near daily fire since Oct. 8.

15:05 Beirut Time

A third person was arrested in Brazil in connection to the foiled "terrorist attacks," Reuters reported.

The man, whose identity was not made public, has alleged ties to Hezbollah and had been under investigation prior to his arrest.

Read the full story in the link below: 

Brazilian police arrest third man suspected of links to Hezbollah

Brazilian police arrest third man suspected of links to Hezbollah

14:38 Beirut Time

Sweden's foreign ministry on Monday said some Swedes had left the Gaza Strip, crossing the Rafah border into Egypt. "We can confirm that Swedes have left the Gaza strip, but we cannot give an exact number," a spokesperson for the Swedish foreign ministry said, according to Reuters.

14:37 Beirut Time

Israeli artillery shelled in the vicinity of the southern towns of Hula and Markaba, L'Orient Today's correspondent in southern Lebanon and NNA reported. Israel also carried out an "aerial aggression, targeting the area between the town of Bint Jbeil and Ainata with a warplane raid. Israel also attacked a house in Ainata without reporting any injuries until now. This coincided with artillery shelling that targeted the outskirts of the southern towns of Rmaish and Beit Lif," NNA and our correspondent confirmed. Hezbollah published a statement noting that the total number of Israelis injured since the beginning of the war is 1,405. Hezbollah cited the Israeli Health Ministry which is keeping "count of the injured receiving medical treatment in Israeli hospitals in Haifa and in the north."

14:04 Beirut Time

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh has called on the European Union and the United Nations to “parachute aid” into the Gaza Strip, which has been devastated by Israeli artillery and air strikes, AFP reported.

"I call on the United Nations and the European Union to parachute aid into the Gaza Strip, especially the north," he said, referring to the area where fighting is most intense.

14:02 Beirut Time

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin "expressed concern" to Israel's Defense Minister, Yoav Gallant, during a conversation on Saturday regarding "Israel's" involvement in heightening tensions along the border with Lebanon - according to a report by US news outlet, Axios.

It also reported that some members of US President Joe Biden's administration are worried that Israel is trying to "provoke" Hezbollah, which could in turn "create a pretext for a wider war in Lebanon" which could drag the U.S. and other regional actors, like Iran, into the conflict.

For more, check out the full story below:

America's Secretary of Defence warns his Israeli counterpart against military actions in Lebanon, reports Axios

US defense sec. warns Israel against military actions in Lebanon: Axios

13:40 Beirut Time

At least 32 hospital patients from Gaza's Al Shifa Hospital have died over the past three days, the spokesman for the Palestinian health ministry, Ashraf Al Qidra, said.

13:38 Beirut Time

Heavy gunfire continued in the vicinity of Al-Quds Hospital, in Gaza City, the Palestinian Red Crescent said on X (formerly Twitter)

"The convoy of vehicles that set off from the southern Gaza Strip towards the hospital, accompanied by the ICRC to secure the evacuation of patients and medical staff from Al-Quds Hospital was stopped in the Al-Wusta Governorate...The convoy is still waiting for the situation to settle down in the surrounding area of the hospital to be able to reach it to start the evacuation process, " the tweet said.

13:29 Beirut Time

Hezbollah said in a statement that its fighters had targetted "the Rahib site with appropriate weapons at 12:30 pm...achieving direct hits and causing injuries."

13:29 Beirut Time

"Accusations by Josep Borrell [High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy] against Hamas, alleging the use of hospitals and civilians as human shields, twist the facts and provide European cover for further crimes against children and innocent civilians," Hamas said in a statement Monday, Reuters reported.

The European Union on Sunday condemned Hamas for using "hospitals and civilians as human shields" in Gaza, while also urging Israel to show "maximum restraint" to protect civilians.

"We strongly reject and condemn the attempt by the European Union's foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, to distort the truth by submitting to the false narrative of the occupation, which claims that Hamas uses hospitals and civilians as human shields," Hamas said in its statement.

13:25 Beirut Time

A Palestinian boy stands near empty shells at a supermarket in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip on Nov. 13, 2023, amid the ongoing battles between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas. (Credit: Mohammed Abed/AFP)

13:21 Beirut Time

Hezbollah fighters "targeted at 11:00 am ...a Zionist infantry force near the [Israeli] Baranit barracks with precision-guided missiles, causing confirmed casualties, including fatalities and injuries," Hezbollah said in a statement.

This comes "in support of our steadfast Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip and in solidarity with their brave and honorable resistance," the statement explained.

13:15 Beirut Time

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees posted on X (formerly Twitter) that Israel’s navy struck one of its facilities in southern Gaza despite sharing coordinates with warring parties.

Sunday’s strike caused “significant damage” to its guesthouse in Rafah, adding no casualties were reported since UN staff left the facility 90 minutes before the attack. There was no immediate comment from the Israeli military.

“This recent attack is yet another indication that nowhere in Gaza is safe. Not the north, not the middle areas and not the south,” said UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini.

UNRWA says it has shared the coordinates of the UN international staff guesthouse twice with the warring parties, including on Nov. 10.

13:08 Beirut Time

United Nations workers observed a minute’s silence to honor the more than 100 employees killed in Gaza with UN flags flying at half-mast, AFP reported.

Staff at UN offices in Geneva bowed their heads as a candle was lit in memory of the 101 employees from the Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA killed in Israel’s relentless assault.

“This is the highest number of aid workers killed in the history of our organization in such a short time,” said Tatiana Valovaya, director-general of the UN in Geneva.

“We are gathered here today, united in this very symbolic location, to pay respect to our brave colleagues who sacrificed their lives while serving under the United Nations flag.

“I would like to say we are really facing very challenging times for multilateralism, for the world,” Valovaya said. “But the United Nations is more relevant than ever.”

12:51 Beirut Time

Gaza's health ministry said that the total number of people who have died at al-Shifa Hospital since the power was cut on Nov. 11 has risen to 27 adults and seven babies, AFP reported.

12:45 Beirut Time

Ali, a student living in Kfar Roummane, in southern Lebanon told L'Orient Today that an Israeli strike occurred two kilometers away from his house.

"It wasn't in the city but in the surrounding areas. Now, it's not just fear that people feel, but a constant sense of anxiety. Especially since the strikes are getting closer to us. It's no longer limited to the border. The strike in Zahrani [on Saturday] also added to our distress, more than just fear."

"So far, we haven't decided to leave our city, but we're afraid of an escalation and the strikes getting closer...what complicates matters is that landlords [in Beirut, north Lebanon, and the Chouf area]have doubled rents and are taking advantage of the situation."

For more on the southerners fleeing north to safety, check out the story below:

Threat of war brings higher rent in Beirut’s ‘safer’ mountain outskirts

Threat of war brings higher rent in Beirut’s ‘safer’ mountain outskirts

12:38 Beirut Time

The town of Ramieh in southern Lebanon is currently under Israeli fire by "phosphorus bombs," the state-run National News Agency reported.

12:15 Beirut Time

A Turkish humanitarian ship carrying field hospitals for the Gaza Strip has arrived at the Egyptian port of Al-Arish, near the Rafah border terminal with the Palestinian territory, as confirmed by a port official to AFP.

This marks the first relief ship delivering field hospitals for Gaza to reach Egypt, given that all hospitals in the city of Gaza are now reportedly out of service, according to the Gazan Ministry of Health.

11:50 Beirut Time

Hezbollah fighters targeted "at 10:35 AM...a Zionist infantry force at the [Israeli] Dhaira location with rockets, achieving direct hits and causing casualties," Hezbollah said in a statement.

This comes "in support of our resilient Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip and in endorsement of their brave and honorable resistance," the statement added.

According to Haaretz, residents of eight Israeli towns in the Upper Galilee were instructed to enter protected areas until further notice. The Upper Galilee Regional Council notified the residents to seek shelter in secure spaces.

11:37 Beirut Time

Mohammed Srour, the head of the municipality of Aita al-Shaab, told L'Orient Today that "the town has been under bombardment since morning, and shells continue to fall on the outskirts and inside the town."

Speaking to our correspondent in southern Lebanon, Srour said the "damage is extensive in the town, with more than 200 houses suffering major and partial damage" since the start of the war. He mentioned that the shells targeting one house end up affecting neighboring homes with their shrapnel.|

Srour explained that the town's residents have evacuated to ensure their security.

11:35 Beirut Time

The European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid, Janez Lenarcic, urged Israel on Monday to implement "genuine" humanitarian pauses in its conflict with Hamas, as reported by AFP.

"It is urgent to define and respect humanitarian pauses. These pauses must be genuine," Lenarcic stated upon arrival at a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels.

"First and foremost, they must be announced in advance" and "clearly defined," which "has not been the case so far," he emphasized.

11:29 Beirut Time

Update on the situation in southern Lebanon:

The localities of Jebbine, Tayr Harfa, and Naqoura were reportedly bombarded by the Israeli army on Monday, according to security sources contacted by L'Orient Today's correspondent in southern Lebanon. Additionally, our correspondent reported that over 15 rockets were launched from Lebanon towards Israel. According to Al Manar, a Hezbollah-affiliated broadcaster, Israeli artillery targetted a house in the town of Aita al-Shaab. Earlier in the day, the Israeli army targeted the localities of Shihine al-Boustan, Oum al-Tout, and Aita al-Shaab.

The state-run National News Agency also reported that the town of Labbouneh was bombed by Israel on Monday morning.

On Sunday evening, residents and security sources confirmed to our correspondent that Israeli fighter jets flew over Nabatieh, Iqlim al-Tuffah, Aita al-Shaab, and Zahrani.

The Israeli army also fired on Wadi Qatmoun and Rmaish, using medium-range weapons, before deploying illuminating bombs over Rmaish.

10:47 Beirut Time

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has warned on X (formally Twitter) of a “dire and perilous” situation in Gaza’s hospitals, saying more patients, including premature babies, are “tragically” dying.

10:20 Beirut Time

The Israeli army announced on Monday the death of two more soldiers in the fighting in the Gaza Strip, bringing the total number of its military personnel killed in the Palestinian territory to 44 since the beginning of the war with Hamas, AFP reported.

09:50 Beirut Time

The Israeli government has approved Communication Minister Shlomo Karhi's order to shut down any broadcaster that is considered a threat to national security, close their offices and seize their equipment, Haaretz reported.

Consequently, Karhi ordered the closure of Al-Mayadeen, an Arabic broadcaster affiliated with Iran-backed Hezbollah and the Syrian government, offices in the West Bank, the blocking of its website and the seizure of its equipment.

09:38 Beirut Time

Over a dozen premature babies and patients have died at Gaza's al-Shifa Hospital since the power went out over the weekend, AFP reported.

According to Youssef Abu Rish, Gaza's deputy health minister, another premature baby and two more patients have died, bringing the total up to six premature babies and nine patients that have died since power at the hospital went out on Saturday, Nov. 11.

After the power went out, Gaza's health ministry said that 39 premature babies were at risk of dying.

The government in Gaza also announced that all hospitals in northern Gaza are no longer operational.

09:27 Beirut Time

Two men succeeded on Sunday afternoon in tearing down French flags placed at the entrance of the French Embassy in Beirut, temporarily hoisting a Palestinian flag in its place.

A video capturing their actions circulated on social media. A Lebanese army official confirmed to L’Orient Today that these men were eventually arrested on Sunday.

09:19 Beirut Time

Eight Iran-affiliated fighters in Syria died following US airstrikes on eastern Syria late Sunday, AFP reported.

The strikes took place in the Mayadeen and Albu Kamel areas in Deir Ezzor province and come after repeated attacks by Iran-backed groups on US military positions in Iraq and Syria.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Monday left open the possibility of more strikes against Iran-linked groups if attacks against American forces in Iraq and Syria don't stop, hours after overnight US strikes in Syria.

"These attacks must stop, and if they don't stop, then we won't hesitate to do what's necessary, again, to protect the troops," Austin told reporters at a news conference in Seoul. 

09:13 Beirut Time

According to Haaretz, Israeli soldiers raided the home of a senior Islamic Jihad leader on the outskirts of the Shati refugee camp in Gaza and discovered "a cache of weaponry in the children's room."

The Israeli army alleged that "combat equipment were found placed in central civilian institutions, such as schools, universities and mosques," Haaretz and Al Jazeera reported.

09:04 Beirut Time

Good morning!

Thank you for joining us for L'Orient Today's live coverage of day 38 of the ongoing Hamas-Israel war in Gaza.