Live updates | Israel launches more strikes in Gaza as UN delays vote on a cease-fire resolution

Israeli troops have launched more deadly strikes in Gaza and raided the last working hospital in Gaza City

The Associated Press
Tuesday 19 December 2023 10:43 GMT

Israeli troops launched more deadly strikes in Gaza on Tuesday and raided the last working hospital in Gaza City, while the U.N. Security Council delayed voting on an Arab-sponsored resolution for an urgent cessation of hostilities.

A strike on a home in Rafah where displaced people were sheltering killed at least 25 people, including women and children, and another killed at least three people, according to Associated Press journalists who saw the bodies arrive at two local hospitals early Tuesday.

Nearly 20,000 Palestinians have been killed since Israel declared war on Hamas, according to the Health Ministry in Gaza, which does not differentiate between civilian and combatant deaths. Thousands more lie buried under the rubble of Gaza, the U.N. estimates. Israel says 127 of its soldiers have died in its ground offensive after Hamas raided southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing about 1,200 people — mostly civilians — and taking about 240 hostages.


— UN Security Council delays vote on resolution urging cessation of hostilities in Gaza to deliver aid.

— Pentagon announces new international mission to counter attacks on commercial vessels in Red Sea.

— In Israel's killing of three hostages, some see the same excessive force directed at Palestinians.

— Houthi attacks on commercial ships have upended global trade in vital Red Sea corridor.

— Find more of AP’s coverage at

Here’s what’s happening in the war:


JERUSALEM - The Israeli army has suspended a group of soldiers recorded smoking a water pipe and joking in front of Palestinians who were detained and blindfolded.

The video, which was uploaded to social media and has garnered millions of views in the past two days, shows soldiers laughing and eating snacks as at least seven Palestinians are sitting blindfolded in the same room in the Israeli-occupied West Bank city of Jenin.

“The behavior of the soldiers in the videos is deplorable and stands in stark contrast to the values of the IDF (Israel Defense Forces),” an Israeli army spokesperson said. After a disciplinary hearing, the reserve duty soldiers were suspended until further notice, the spokesperson said.


A group of U.S. Congress members who are veterans urged President Joe Biden on Monday to use “all our leverage” to pressure Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to change a military strategy killing many thousands of civilians in Gaza.

“The mounting civilian death toll and humanitarian crisis are unacceptable and not in line with American interests; nor do they advance the cause of security for our ally Israel,” six lawmakers, all Democratic representatives, said in an open letter to Biden.

The six are Jason Crow, a Bronze Star recipient and former Army Ranger; Mikie Sherrill, a former Navy pilot; Chrissy Houlahan, a former Air Force officer; Seth Moulton, a former Marine; and Elissa Slotkin and Abigail Spanberger, former CIA officers.

The letter adds to pressure from Biden’s own party in Congress to push Netanyahu to rein in a massive air and ground campaign The lawmakers sit on armed services, intelligence and foreign affairs committees in Congress.

“Some of us also spent years fighting America’s war on terror. We know from personal and often painful experience that you can’t destroy a terror ideology with military force alone,” the lawmakers wrote. “Accordingly, we urge you to continue to use all our leverage to achieve an immediate and significant shift of military strategy and tactics in Gaza.”


UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. Security Council has delayed a vote on an Arab-sponsored resolution calling for a halt to hostilities in Gaza to try to avoid another veto by the United States.

The council said Monday’s 5 p.m. vote was pushed back until Tuesday morning, and diplomats said negotiations were taking place to get the United States, Israel’s closest ally, to abstain or vote “yes” on the resolution.

The draft resolution on the table Monday morning called for an “urgent and sustainable cessation of hostilities,” to allow unhindered access to deliver humanitarian aid to the massive number of civilians in need of food, water and medicine.

But this language is expected to be watered down to a “suspension” of hostilities or similar language to get U.S. support, the diplomats said, speaking on condition of anonymity because discussions have been private.

The importance of a Security Council resolution is that it is legally binding, but in practice many parties choose to ignore the council’s requests for action. General Assembly resolutions are not legally binding, though they are a significant barometer of world opinion.

The U.S. vetoed a Security Council resolution backed by almost all council members and dozens of other nations demanding an immediate humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza. The 193-member General Assembly overwhelmingly approved a similar resolution on Dec. 12 by a vote of 153-10, with 23 abstentions.

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