People investigate the scene of an Israeli drone strike in the southern suburbs of Beirut on Jan. 2, 2024. (Credit: Mohammed Yassin/L'Orient Today)


Three Hamas members, including deputy political leader, killed in Israeli drone strike on Beirut southern suburbs: Day 88 of Hamas-Israel war

What you need to know

Seven people were killed in two explosions attributed to an Israeli drone strike in Beirut's southern suburbs. The attack also injured at least 11 people.

The attack "is a new Israeli crime aimed at dragging Lebanon into a new phase of confrontation" said outgoing Prime Minister Najib Mikati.

The Israeli army says it is ready for "any scenario" after the assassination of the deputy leader of Hamas' political wing, in the drone strike on Beirut.

At least 22,185 dead and 57,035 wounded in Gaza since Oct. 7, according to Gaza's Ministry of Health.

22:48 Beirut Time

Thank you for following our LIVE coverage from day 88 of the Hamas-Israel war.

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

22:42 Beirut Time

Saleh al-Arouri, Hamas' deputy political leader, joined the group when he was 21 years old and was a key negotiator in the 2011 hostage exchange between Hamas and Israel, as well as the exchange that occurred during the week-long truce in the Gaza war last November.

👉 Read more about Arouri's role in Hamas here.

22:12 Beirut Time

In a statement released following the assassination of Hamas's deputy political leader, Hezbollah mourns "the loss of Sheikh Saleh al-Arouri, a great jihadist leader, and his fellow martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the path to Jerusalem. Our condolences extend to Hamas, al-Qassam Brigades, and the steadfast people of Gaza, Jerusalem, the West Bank, and all Palestinian factions. The enemy's criminal policy of assassination is aimed at those defending Palestine, as seen in this recent act and others like it. However, these actions only strengthen the resolve of Palestinian and regional resistance movements."

Hezbollah also noted that "the assassination in Beirut's southern suburb is viewed as a severe assault on Lebanon's sovereignty, security, and resistance, marking a significant development in the conflict between the enemy and the 'Axis of Resistance.'"

Hezbollah says it has its "finger on the trigger" and that the targeting of Hamas in Lebanon "will not pass without retaliation. Our resistance remains steadfast and prepared. This pivotal day holds great significance, and victory, by the will of God, is near. Patience and reliance on God are our strength."

21:57 Beirut Time

The names of seven people who were killed by an Israeli drone strike in Msharafieh, in the southern suburbs of Beirut have been released by Hamas, and confirmed by our correspondent in the south and a Hezbollah spokesperson.

They are: Saleh al-Arouri, deputy leader of Hamas' political wing; Samir Fendi and Azzam al-Aqraa, both leaders within al-Qassam Brigades; and Ahmed Hammoud, Mahmoud Shahin, Mohammed Bsharat, and Mohammed al-Reis, who have not yet been confirmed as affiliated with any particular group.

Reports say the attacks happened while a meeting between Palestinian factions was underway in the building where a Hamas office is located.

21:48 Beirut Time

🔴 BREAKING: Al-Aqsa TV, affiliated with Hamas, reports that leaders in the al-Qassam Brigades, Samir Fendi, known as Abu Amer, and Azam al-Aqraa, known as Abu Ammar, were also killed in the Israeli drone attack on the southern suburbs of Beirut.

21:26 Beirut Time

The Fatah Movement in Lebanon condemned "the cowardly assassination of Saleh al-Arouri, a prominent Palestinian leader of Hamas, and his comrades." In an official statement, the movement extended its "condolences to Hamas, the martyrs' families, and all Palestinians," vowing to "continue the fight until victory, liberation, and the formation of an independent [Palestinian] state with Jerusalem as its capital, and the return of [Palestinian] refugees to their homeland."

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh also condemned the assassination, calling it a "crime perpetrated by known criminals" and warned about the "risks and consequences that could follow," according to a statement issued by his office, cited by AFP.

21:24 Beirut Time

📣 On the ground: Our correspondent in Msharafieh interviewed a source working with rescue teams and another source associated with Hezbollah, who confirmed six bodies have been found at the site of two explosions attributed to an Israeli drone attack in the southern suburb of Beirut earlier this evening. This tally confirms the one earlier reported by the state-run National News Agency.

Around 9:00 p.m., ambulances dispatched to the scene began to leave. The Hezbollah source indicated that the forces deployed there would "reopen the road," then continue assessing the damage and aiding residents who live close to the site of the explosion.

Multiple Hezbollah sources also indicated that the attack was carried out by a drone and had targeted a building housing a Hamas office, where reportedly a meeting between Palestinian factions was underway.

(Photo by Mohammad Yassine/L'Orient Today)

21:13 Beirut Time

Here are some more pictures from one of our photographers, João Sousa, who is on the scene in the area of Msharrafieh, in the southern suburbs of Beirut, where an Israeli drone targeted a meeting of Palestinian factions, killing several Hamas members.

21:07 Beirut Time

Palestinian factions mourn "the loss of Saleh al-Arouri and his comrades, killed by Zionist [Israeli] forces in Beirut," calling for a "unified and firm response from Arab and Islamic nations against this aggression," in a collective statement. The factions declared this period as one "of mourning [and] strikes," and urged for "revolutionary action in all arenas."

In the statement, the allied groups say "this crime strengthens the resistance and instills in our people more strength, confidence, and belief in victory and liberation. It also underscores the failure of the aggression in Gaza, causing the enemy to seek a false image of triumph, which will not materialize, and they will pay dearly for their crime in all arenas and on all fronts."

21:00 Beirut Time

📣 On the ground: Our reporters at the scene of the explosion say rescue efforts are ongoing, in the search for any potential survivors. The Lebanese Army and people in civilian clothing likely affiliated with Hezbollah are looking through the rubble for bullets and any human remains.

20:50 Beirut Time

Pictured is one of the cars struck in what is now being reported as a drone strike in the southern suburbs of Beirut. The explosion has been attributed to Israel, and Hamas has confirmed the killing of its deputy leader of the political bureau, Saleh al-Arouri. (Credit: Olivia Le Poidevin/L'Orient Today)

20:42 Beirut Time

Damaged buildings after an explosion that targeted the southern suburbs of Beirut earlier this evening. (Credit: Olivia Le Poidevin/L'Orient Today)

20:39 Beirut Time

Iran says that the assassination of Hamas official Saleh al-Arouri in an Israeli drone strike will further ignite the resistance against Israel, Reuters reports, citing Iranian state media. In a speech in August, Secretary General of Hezbollah Hassan Nasrallah said that there would be a fierce retaliation if any leader of the “Axis of Resistance,” whether Syrian, Palestinian, Lebanese, or Iranian, is killed in Lebanon.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Nasser Kanaani condemned the violation of Lebanon's sovereignty and territorial integrity by "the aggressive Zionist regime," and said  "The martyr's blood will undoubtedly ignite another surge in the veins of resistance and the motivation to fight against the Zionist occupiers, not only in Palestine but also in the region and among all freedom-seekers worldwide."

20:23 Beirut Time

Prime Minister Najib Mikati has contacted Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdullah Bou Habib to request that an urgent complaint be submitted to the United Nations Security Council regarding the blatant breach of Lebanese sovereignty demonstrated by the explosion that occurred in the southern suburb of Beirut this evening, along with all the recent Israeli violations against Lebanese sovereignty along its southern border.

20:20 Beirut Time

People are gathering to condemn the assassination of Saleh al-Arouri, in demonstrations across various areas of Burj al-Shamali, a Palestinian refugee camp located in Sour, southern Lebanon, our correspondent reports. Protesters called on Hamas to take "revenge" for the killing. (Credit: Muntasser Abdallah/L'Orient Today)

20:15 Beirut Time

Mosques in areas of the occupied West Bank around Ramallah are mourning the death of one of their own, Saleh al-Arouri, who was killed earlier in an explosion in Beirut attributed to Israel, a local Palestinian journalist in Ramallah tells L'Orient Today. Arouri was the deputy leader of Hamas' political wing and had been living in Lebanon since 2018.

Across Ramallah, citizens have taken to the streets chanting "Salah al-Arouri is a martyr," and calling on Nasrallah to retaliate, the journalist there reports. Al Jazeera also reports protests and gatherings taking place in Ramallah and several towns near it, such as Deir Qaddis. A general strike in Ramallah has been called for Wednesday.

20:04 Beirut Time

📣 On the ground: The Lebanese Army is blocking access to the scene of an explosion in the southern Beirut suburb of Msharafieh. According to reports from local media, the explosion killed several Hamas members, including the deputy leader of its political bureau, as confirmed by the group. The Lebanese Army is also trying to prohibit photography, reports our local journalist Lyana Alameddine.

For dozens of meters around the targeted building, the ground is strewn with rubble and the air is filled with the smell of burning. Many onlookers have gathered at the scene.

According to our reporter, members of the Red Cross, Civil Defense and ambulance crews are on the scene. From a distance, they can be seen picking up human body parts and pieces of torn fabric.

A child wearing a Hezbollah flag is on the scene with his father. "We've come to show that we're not afraid. [The Israelis] go down and hide in their shelters, but we don't do that. We're not afraid," the father says.

19:49 Beirut Time

"We were here, working next door. There were three cars across the road from me, just a few meters away. It all happened very quickly, like a thunderclap. We saw the smoke. A first projectile fell on the house, a second on the car," a witness told our reporter on the scene, Lyana Alameddine. "We live here. We want to leave, but we can't. If we go back to southern Lebanon, [the Israelis] will hit us there too. We can't run away," he said.

19:44 Beirut Time

The Israeli attack on the Hamas office in Beirut where a meeting of Palestinian factions was taking place killed a Hamas official from the West Bank, Saleh al-Arouri, along with two other Hamas members, and three other people, unidentified as of yet. It also injured 11 individuals who were transported to hospitals in the area, the state-run National News Agency reported. According to NNA, two missiles targeted the Hamas office and cars parked in front of the building.

19:30 Beirut Time

Hamas says that the assassination of Saleh al-Arouri in Beirut will not bend the "resistance" and "will not break the determination of our people," in a statement broadcast on the group's official Telegram channel. "This is evidence of the enemy's failure to achieve its objectives in Gaza."

19:28 Beirut Time

The Secretary General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, has not canceled either of the two scheduled speeches for this week, one on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. and the other on Friday at 2:30 p.m., a Hezbollah spokesperson told L'Orient Today. This contradicts information circulating on social media following the Israeli attack in a southern suburb of Beirut earlier this evening.

19:26 Beirut Time

The explosion in Beirut's Msharafieh suburb "is a new Israeli crime aimed at dragging Lebanon into a new phase of confrontations after the continuous daily attacks in the south, resulting in a large number of martyred and wounded," says caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati.

In a statement following the explosion that killed the deputy leader of Hamas' political wing, Mikati said that "this explosion is certainly an attempt to involve Lebanon and is a clear response to our efforts to keep the specter of the Gaza war away from Lebanon. We urge concerned countries to exert pressure on Israel to stop its targeting. We also warn against the Israeli political class resorting to exporting its failures in Gaza to Lebanon's southern border, imposing new realities and rules of engagement."

Mikati insisted that Lebanon is committed to Resolution 1701, which ended the July 2006 war between Hezbollah and Israel and facilitated significant Lebanese Army deployment in the area of southern Lebanon patrolled by UNIFIL, where Hezbollah's influence is strong.

19:11 Beirut Time

Hamas television confirms that the Israeli strike did indeed kill one of the Hamas leaders, Saleh al-Arouri.

In Israel, Knesset member Danny Danon congratulated "[the Israeli army], the Shin Bet, the Mossad, and security forces for killing senior Hamas official Saleh al-Arouri in Beirut," in a post on X.

19:03 Beirut Time

There were two Israeli airstrikes in the southern Lebanese town of Maroun al-Ras, Bint Jbeil district, the first near the municipal stadium, and the second close to the olive press, local residents tell our correspondent in the south. No casualties have been reported yet.

19:00 Beirut Time

Some information about Saleh al-Arouri, deputy leader of Hamas' political bureau:

• He had been living in Lebanon since 2018.

• He was 58 years old, born in the occupied West Bank in a village near Ramallah. He studied Islamic studies at Hebron University.

• Imprisoned twice, he spent a total of twelve years in Israeli jails before being released in April 2010.

• He was one of Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah's privileged interlocutors.

• On Oct. 31, the Israeli army blew up his house in the village of Aroura, near Ramallah, in the West Bank.

• He is said to have masterminded several military operations against Israel, including the salvo of rockets fired in April 2023 from southern Lebanon.

• He was one of the main negotiators for the release of hostages held by Hamas. On Dec. 2, 2023, he told Al Jazeera in an interview that "The remaining prisoners in our hands are soldiers and former soldiers, and there will be no negotiations concerning them until the end of hostilities."

👉 Read more about Hamas in Lebanon here.

18:53 Beirut Time

18:36 Beirut Time

🔴 BREAKING: Saleh al-Arouri a senior leader of Hamas and a founding commander of its military wing, the al-Qassam Brigades was killed by the explosion in the southern suburbs of Beirut, Hamas says, cited by al-Manar, a Hebzollah-affiliated news channel. A Hezbollah spokesperson has confirmed this information with L'Orient Today.

18:27 Beirut Time

A local resident and witness at the site of the explosion has told L'Orient Today that there is human debris seen on the ground. According to several local media outlets, including al-Mayadeen, al-Jadeed, and the state-run National News Agency (NNA), four people were killed by the explosion.

Reuters reports that the explosion targeted a Hamas office in Beirut's southern suburb, citing NNA.

18:13 Beirut Time

A Hezbollah spokesperson told L'Orient Today that the explosion in Beirut seems to have been "a targeted assassination and ... a rocket attack."

18:08 Beirut Time

Pictured is the building in which an explosion just occurred in the southern suburbs of Beirut. (Photo sent to L'Orient Today by local resident)

18:06 Beirut Time

🔴 BREAKING: There are reports of an explosion in Beirut, in the area of Msharafieh, in the southern suburbs of the city, according to L'Orient Today's correspondent. The cause is not yet known, whether it was the result of an airstrike, a terrorist attack, or something else, according to our correspondent.

17:51 Beirut Time

The Israeli army says that 31 soldiers were wounded in combat in the last 24 hours, Haaretz reports. Five soldiers were seriously wounded, 12 moderately and 17 lightly. According to the Israeli army, 18 of the 31 soldiers were wounded in the Gaza Strip. Reports haven't specified where the other 13 soldiers were wounded, but ongoing fighting along the border with Lebanon has resulted in the death of nine Israeli soldiers and four civilians according to the latest numbers released by the Israeli army last week.

The Israeli army says that since the war in Gaza started, 507 soldiers have been killed and 2,265 others injured. At least 983 soldiers have been wounded since the start of the ground invasion at the end of October.

17:38 Beirut Time

Hezbollah announces that at 4:25 p.m. its fighters targeted "the newly deployed espionage equipment set up by [Israel] on cranes near the Ramim barracks," an Israeli site established in the town of Hounin, with "appropriate weaponry, causing direct damage." Hounin is located in northern Israel along the border with Lebanon, in the Upper Galilee, near the town of Kiryat Shmona.

17:28 Beirut Time

Only 15 percent of Israelis want Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to stay in office after the war on Hamas in Gaza ends, though many more still support his strategy of completely dismantling the militants in the Palestinian enclave, according to a poll published today, as reported by Reuters.

In the poll conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute (IDI), 56 percent of those questioned said continuing the military offensive was the best way to recover the hostages, while 24 percent thought a swap deal including the release of thousands more Palestinian prisoners from Israel's jails would be best.

👉 Read more here.

16:39 Beirut Time

Israeli artillery targeted the outskirts of Tayr Harfa, Sour district, with two shells, local residents told L'Orient Today.

According to Haaretz, the Israeli army responded to a source of artillery fire launched from Lebanon into northern Israel, without specifying the location.

16:09 Beirut Time

An Israeli artillery shell fell between residential neighborhoods in the area of Darb al-Hawarat, south of the Lebanese border town of Mais al-Jabal, Marjeyoun district, local residents tell L'Orient Today's correspondent. No casualties have been reported.

According to a security source, two houses on the southwestern outskirts of the Lebanese border town of Blida, Marjayoun district, were targeted by an Israeli drone strike, again with no casualties reported so far.

Israeli artillery shelling is targeting the outskirts of the southern Lebanese town of Hula, Nabatieh district, according to local residents who spoke with our correspondent in the south.

15:53 Beirut Time

Hezbollah announces that it targeted the Israeli site of Birket Richa, "inflicting direct injuries," and the Israeli Samakah site in the occupied Lebanese Shebaa Farms with missiles, both attacks occuring at 3 p.m.

Haaretz reports that sirens were activated in the northern Israeli town of Misgav Am, which faces the southern Lebanese town of Adaisseh.

15:41 Beirut Time

Palestinian Hamada Abu Sleyma lost his wife, all his six children, and two grandchildren in an Israeli attack that destroyed his house in Rafah, southern Gaza.

(Credit: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters)

15:40 Beirut Time

The Palestine Red Crescent Society says Israeli forces targeted its headquarters in Khan Younis, hitting the eighth floor in a strike that resulted in the deaths of at least four displaced people, including a baby.

15:37 Beirut Time

The Israeli army shelled the outskirts of southern Lebanese border villages Halta and Kfarchouba, Hasbaya district, minutes ago, residents of the villages told L'Orient Today's correspondent in the south, Muntasser Abdallah.

14:58 Beirut Time

A woman prepares fresh dough for bread as she sits next to a man and children outside tents by the rubble of a destroyed building in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on Jan. 2, 2024, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas. (Credit: AFP)

14:49 Beirut Time

Hezbollah announces it launched a suicide drone attack at 11:30 a.m. on a base for the 91st Division of the Israeli military near Ayelet, northeast of Safed, and they “accurately hit the target.”

14:18 Beirut Time

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair denied having had discussions in Israel about moving Palestinians from Gaza, as claimed by Israeli television, reports AFP.

According to Israeli media Channel 12, Blair, who left office in 2007 and was subsequently an envoy to the Middle East responsible for establishing Palestinian institutions, was in Israel last week. He reportedly held meetings with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and war cabinet member Benny Gantz about a mediation role after the war with Hamas, Channel 12 said.

According to this channel, he could also have the role of intermediary with moderate Arab states for a “voluntary resettlement” of the inhabitants of Gaza. But Blair's foundation, the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, dismissed the claims as a "lie."

13:45 Beirut Time

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq announced on Hezbollah's Telegram account that it had bombarded the American base of Al-Shaddadi in Syria with a salvo of missiles. According to the group, the strike is part of its "approach to resistance to the American occupation forces in Iraq and the region," and in response to the war in Gaza.

This is the second operation of the day carried out by the group in Syria, after the first in the Green Village region.

13:39 Beirut Time

Former CIA director, General David Petraeus, told the BBC that Israel has to "clear and hold all of Gaza" so it can destroy Hamas and rescue the 140 remaining hostages.

The former general, who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, has drawn parallels to how Iraqi forces, helped by US-led coalition warplanes, recaptured the Iraqi town of Mosul from the Islamic State group in 2017. This major military operation destroyed large areas and killed thousands of civilians.

"If you look at the case of [the Iraqi town of] Mosul and destruction of the Islamic State – and I think Hamas can be compared to that, though it's an imperfect analogy, but if that is the model, you have to destroy Hamas, you cannot reconcile with them."

13:29 Beirut Time

Israeli government spokesman and former Israeli ambassador to the UK, Mark Regev, told Sky News that his country is withdrawing some troops from Gaza because "this is a marathon, not a sprint."

He says the war has to end with the destruction of Hamas's military capabilities, to not see any more attacks on Israel in the future. "Gaza should no longer be this terror enclave that threatens its neighbors," he added.

13:06 Beirut Time

Four Israeli rockets targeted the outskirts of Aitaroun (Bint Jbeil), residents of the region told our correspondent in southern Lebanon, Muntasser Abdallah.

Israeli bombings also targeted the outskirts of Wazzani (Marjayoun). 

13:02 Beirut Time

Palestinian man Hamada Abu Sleyma, whose wife, all his 6 children and two grandchildren were killed in an Israeli strike that destroyed his house, walks on rubble, in Rafah in the southern gaza Strip, Jan. 1, 2024. (Credit: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters)

12:41 Beirut Time

Israeli military operations in the Gaza Strip have left 22,185 dead since Oct. 7, announced the Hamas Ministry of Health, according to AFP.

This toll includes 207 people killed in the last 24 hours, the ministry added, noting that at least 57,035 people have been injured since the start of the war.

12:35 Beirut Time

Summary of Israeli bombardments in southern Lebanon today:

- Ten Israeli rockets fell in the locality of Ain al-Zarqa, located between the villages of Dhaira and Tayr Harfa (Sour), eyewitnesses told L'Orient Today.

- The Israeli army shelled the outskirts of Naqoura, Alma al-Shaab, Dhaira and Jibbein (Sour) shortly after 11.15 a.m., local residents told L'Orient Today.

- Israel shelled an area between the villages of Maroun al-Ras and Bint Jbeil at around 8 a.m., eyewitnesses told L'Orient Today.

- Israel also carried out airstrikes on the border village of Maroun al-Ras, eyewitnesses told L'Orient Today.

- Israeli bombardments targeted an area between the villages of Shebaa and Kfar Shouba, local residents told L'Orient Today.

12:10 Beirut Time

Thirty-three people suspected of spying for Israel have been arrested in Turkey, Turkish news agencies Anadolu and DHA announced Tuesday.

The suspects, arrested in several provinces of the country, are suspected of having spied on foreign nationals residing in Turkey on behalf of the Israeli secret services, the official Anadolu news agency said.

12:03 Beirut Time

4,156 students were killed in the war in Gaza, reported the Palestinian Ministry of Education, cited by Al-Jazeera.

At least 381 schools were bombed or damaged, he also said. 

11:52 Beirut Time

Hezbollah announced that it had targeted Israeli soldiers gathered in the Zar'it barracks at 9 a.m., causing “ deaths and injuries.”

11:42 Beirut Time

As we previously reported the US aircraft carrier, Gerald R. Ford, will be leaving the Middle East in the next few days and will return to its home port in Virginia.

This navy ship was deployed, alongside the Dwight D. Eisenhower, to the Mediterranean Sea and the other to the Persian Gulf, to deter further regional escalation following the Hamas Oct. 7 attack on Israel. Since then there have been a number of strikes on shipping vessels in the Red Sea, led by the Yemeni Houthi rebel group, which is backed by Iran.

And now the Israeli newspaper says the US withdrawal of the Gerald R. Ford "does not bode well" for Israel, as Hezbollah may "interpret the move as an opportunity to take more risks."

11:06 Beirut Time

The Islamic Resistance in Iraq announced on Hezbollah's Telegram account that it had attacked, using drones, the American base located in the Green Village, in the heart of Syria.

They say the strike was in response to America's "occupying forces" in Iraq and in the region, as well as the war in Gaza.

“The Islamic Resistance confirms that it continues to destroy enemy strongholds,” the statement said.

10:58 Beirut Time

Israel carried out an attack on Syrian military targets overnight from Monday to Tuesday in response to rocket fire, the Israeli army announced, according to Reuters.

The army struck what it described as the "military infrastructure of the Syrian army." It does not specify, however, where it carried out these attacks.

The Syrian state-run news agency SANA, however, specifies that the Israeli attack targeted several sites in the capital Damascus. “A military source announced that at 4:35 a.m. Tuesday, the Israeli enemy carried out an aerial attack from the occupied Syrian Golan, targeting several sites in the capital Damascus,” announced the SANA agency.

10:49 Beirut Time

Israeli media is reporting there has been some damage to a building in Shlomi, near the UN-drawn blue line that separates Lebanon and Israel.

Authorities there say two anti-tank guided missiles were fired from Lebanon, with one of the projectiles hitting a building.

The Israeli Army has also confirmed that its fighter jets carried out strikes on Hezbollah positions in Yaroun, in southern Lebanon.

10:29 Beirut Time

Four Palestinians were killed during a raid by the Israeli army into a town in the northern occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Ministry of Health and Israeli military sources announced, according to AFP.

They were killed during clashes that broke out with an Israeli force carrying out an incursion into the locality of Azzun, near the town of Qalqilya, according to the official Palestinian news agency Wafa. The Palestinian Authority Ministry of Health confirmed their deaths.

Read the full report here.

10:01 Beirut Time

Recap of the night in southern Lebanon:

•⁠ ⁠Al-Risala Scouts, first responders affiliated with the Amal Movement, said in a statement that they pulled a dead body from under the rubble after the Israeli army bombed a house in Houla.

•⁠ ⁠Al-Risala Scouts said they extinguished fires caused by Israeli attacks in Maroun al-Ras and Houla.

•⁠ ⁠An Israeli drone struck the outskirts of Naqoura, and Ramieh, a security source told L'Orient Today.

•⁠ ⁠The Israeli army shelled south of Khiam and Marjayoun valley, a security source told L'Orient Today.

09:20 Beirut Time

Haaretz is reporting that there are "dramatic" differences between Hamas and Israel regarding negotiations for a potential stop to the fighting.

According to one of their foreign sources, who has direct contacts between Hamas and Israel, Israel wants a temporary and limited humanitarian deal, including the release of about 40 captives. But, Hamas wants Israeli forces to withdraw from combat zones and for there to be a cease-fire.

"Both sides exchange ideas, but the gap between them is too great, and it's hard to see how it can be bridged," a foreign source says, cited by Haaretz.

09:19 Beirut Time

In the last hour and a half:

•⁠ ⁠The Israeli army bombed an area between the south Lebanon villages of Maroun al-Ras and Bint Jbeil around, sources in the area told L'Orient Today.

•⁠ ⁠The Israeli army struck the southern Lebanon border village of Maroun al-Ras, sources in the area told L'Orient Today.

•⁠ ⁠The Israeli army shelled an area between the southern Lebanon border villages of Shebaa and Kfar Shouba, residents of the area told L'Orient Today.

09:16 Beirut Time

Hezbollah has confirmed that another one of its members has died. He is named as Abd al-Jalil, from the village of Khodor in the Bekaa. Hezbollah did not specify the place and time of death. 138 members of the Iran-backed Shiite group have died on the Lebanese and Syrian fronts since the beginning of the Israel-Hamas war on Oct. 7 – according to the count by L'Orient Today.

09:14 Beirut Time

After intense bombardment during the start of the year yesterday, Israeli strikes have continued into this morning. The Israeli army bombed an area between the south Lebanon villages of Maroun al-Ras and Bint Jbeil around, sources in the area told L'Orient Today.

09:13 Beirut Time

There are reports this morning by Al Jazeera that there have been intense bombardments and "massive explosions" in central Gaza and Khan Younis throughout the night and into this morning.

They are also reporting that heavy rain has flooded some areas of Al-Mawasi – an area where the Israeli army had asked people to evacuate. "A lot of people had water inside their tents...There is no heating, no suitable clothing and no blankets to keep people warm. And waterborne and infectious diseases are spreading," Al-Jazeera's Hani Mahmoud reports from Rafah.

09:11 Beirut Time

Before we get started, be sure to check out the Morning Brief to make sure that you are caught up with what has been happening. 

Morning Brief

Border clashes, fuel deliveries, increasing family benefits: Everything you need to know to start your Tuesday

09:10 Beirut Time

Good morning!

Thank you for joining us for our live coverage of day 88 of the ongoing war between Hamas and Israel in Gaza.