U.S. and U.K. strike Yemeni port, Houthis say
The U.S. and the U.K. have targeted the Ras Issa area of Hudaydah, in two raids on the port city on the Red Sea, Al-Masirah, a Houthi-run TV channel said today.
It did not specify the extent of the damage or if there were any casualties.
NBC News was unable to independently verify this report. The raids follow a strike against a Houthi anti-ship missile by the U.S Central Command early this morning, which they said was aimed into the Red Sea and was prepared to launch against U.S Navy ships and merchant vessels in the area.
Aftermath of a strike in Rafah
A man shovels rubble following a strike in Rafah today.
Hamas says accusations againt UNRWA employees an attempt to cut off aid
Hamas, the militant group that governs Gaza, described accusations from Israeli authorities that staff members working for the U.N.’s agency for Palestinian refugees were involved in the Oct. 7 attacks as “hollow.”
In a statemnet today, it accused Israel of incitement against the “international institutions that contribute to the relief of our people.”
Hamas denied Israel’s accusations, saying they had the aim of “cutting off [UNRWA’s] funding and depriving our people of their right to the services of these international agencies,” and called on the U.N “not to yield to the threats and blackmails.”
Australia to join U.S and Canada in pausing funding to UNRWA
Australia will temporarily pause funding to the U.N’s agency for Palestinian refugees amid reports that staffers in Gaza were involved in Hamas’ Oct 7. attacks on Israel, the foreign minister has said.
“Allegations UNRWA staff were involved in the abhorrent October 7 terror attacks are deeply concerning,” Foreign Minister Penny Wong said in a statement today. “We are speaking with partners and will temporarily pause disbursement of recent funding.”
The U.S and Canada also paused funding to the agency after it said Friday that Israeli authorities had notified them of the involvement of several staff members in the October attacks. The contracts of accused staff members were terminated and an investigation launched, UNRWA commissioner-general Philippe Lazzarini said yesterday.
UNRWA, whose biggest donors include the U.S, E.U and Germany, is the primary U.N agency tasked with providing aid and relief to civilians in Gaza. More than 1.4 million internally displaced people are living inside or around its shelters and facilities in Gaza and hundred of thousands are dependant on the agency for food and supplies.
UNRWA warns of liver infection spreading in informal camps in Gaza
The U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees said Hepatitis A infection is spreading in informal camps in Gaza “due to overcrowding and lack of clean water and proper sanitary.”
UNRWA Partners said in a statement on X today that UNRWA has been watching the situation, and suspected cases in January are 16 times higher than those last November.
“The massive increase reflects worsening living conditions in Gaza, particularly shortage of safe water and inadequate sanitation and hygiene,” it added.
Hepatitis A infection is a type of short-term liver infection caused by a virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adding that it would not become chronic.
Israel’s El Al suspends South Africa route over World Court case
El Al Israel Airlines said today it was suspending its route to Johannesburg at the end of March, citing a steep drop in demand after South Africa accused Israel of genocide at the World Court.
Israel’s flag carrier flies up to twice weekly nonstop to Johannesburg.
“Israelis don’t want to fly to South Africa,” said an El Al spokesperson. “They are cancelling flights and planes are pretty empty… We understand it’s the situation because it was different before.”
The International Court of Justice has ordered Israel to take all measures within its power to prevent acts of genocide against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, a ruling that could have far reaching consequences though the court has no power to enforce it. The United Nations’ top court stopped short of ordering the cease-fire requested by South Africa.
Pediatrician on crisis in Gaza: ‘I ran out of words to describe this’
Dr. Tanya Haj-Hassan, an Intensive Care Pediatrician, describes the desperate scenario facing mothers in Gaza giving birth in the throes of war.
U.S. strikes Houthi missile in Yemen; oil tanker hit earlier
The U.S. military struck what it said was a missile in Houthi-controlled Yemen in the latest attack against the Iran-backed militants which have been firing at commercial ships in the red Sea.
The strike was carried out around 3:45 a.m. Saturday local time and targeted an anti-ship missile aimed at the Red Sea, U.S. Central Command said in a statement.
“It presented an imminent threat to merchant vessels and the U.S. Navy ships in the region. U.S. Forces subsequently struck and destroyed the missile in self-defense,” Central Command, known as CENTCOM, said.
The U.S. military action follows reports of a commercial vessel that was struck by a missile, but the military did not link that attack to the strike in Yemen in its statement.
The Marlin Luanda was struck by a Houthi missile while in the Gulf of Aden earlier today, sparking a fire in the ship’s cargo tank, two U.S. defense officials said.
Commodity trading company Trafigura said the Marlin Luanda, a petroleum products tanker, was hit by a missile as in the Gulf as it was transiting the Red Sea.
“We remain in contact with the vessel and are monitoring the situation carefully. Military ships in the region are underway to provide assistance,” the company said in a statement on its website. The fire was in one cargo tank on the starboard side, and firefighting efforts were taken in response, it said.
IDF calls for residents of Khan Younis refugee camp, other neighborhoods to evacuate
The Israel Defense Forces urged residents of some neighborhoods in western Khan Younis in southern Gaza to leave the areas immediately.
Avichay Adraee, the IDF spokesperson for the Arab media, posted a map of southern Gaza on X today to show the areas that need to be evacuated as soon as possible, including al-Nasr, al-Amal, the city center and Khan Younis refugee camp.
He added that all the residents in these areas need to move via designated al-Bahr Street to al-Mawasi, a humanitarian area near the coast.