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The Latest | UN tells Israel it will pause aid work in Gaza without better safety, UN officials say

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The Latest | UN tells Israel it will pause aid work in Gaza without better safety, UN officials say
News

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The Latest | UN tells Israel it will pause aid work in Gaza without better safety, UN officials say

2024-06-26 05:39 Last Updated At:05:41

Senior U.N. officials have told Israel they will suspend aid operations across Gaza unless urgent steps are taken to better protect humanitarian workers from Israeli strikes and to curb growing lawlessness hindering aid efforts, two U.N. officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss ongoing negotiations with Israeli officials.

The Israeli army declined to comment Tuesday on the U.N. ultimatum, and the Defense Ministry did not return requests for comment. Israel has acknowledged some military strikes on humanitarian workers, including an April attack that killed seven workers with the World Central Kitchen, and denied allegations of others. Israel says any such strikes are mistakes.

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Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Senior U.N. officials have told Israel they will suspend aid operations across Gaza unless urgent steps are taken to better protect humanitarian workers from Israeli strikes and to curb growing lawlessness hindering aid efforts, two U.N. officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss ongoing negotiations with Israeli officials.

U.S. Army soldiers stand at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident backdropped by the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident backdropped by the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians mourn for their relative girl killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in the Maghazi refugee camp outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

Palestinians mourn for their relative girl killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in the Maghazi refugee camp outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

A woman holds the body of her daughter Zena Naser, killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building in Maghazi refugee camp, outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

A woman holds the body of her daughter Zena Naser, killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building in Maghazi refugee camp, outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

Eldar Avital, 12, left, joins pro-Israel supporters to condemn a violent protest the previous weekend outside Adas Torah synagogue as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

Eldar Avital, 12, left, joins pro-Israel supporters to condemn a violent protest the previous weekend outside Adas Torah synagogue as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

A Palestinian girl wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian girl wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

An Allied Universal armed security guard crosses the street along with pro-Israel supporters as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. President Joe Biden has denounced violence that flared when opponents of the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza staged a protest at a Los Angeles synagogue during the weekend. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

An Allied Universal armed security guard crosses the street along with pro-Israel supporters as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. President Joe Biden has denounced violence that flared when opponents of the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza staged a protest at a Los Angeles synagogue during the weekend. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

FILE - Israeli police officers remove an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man from the street during a protest against army recruitment in Jerusalem on June 2, 2024. Israel’s Supreme Court on Tuesday, June 25, ruled unanimously that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for military service, a decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition as Israel continues to wage war in Gaza. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)

FILE - Israeli police officers remove an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man from the street during a protest against army recruitment in Jerusalem on June 2, 2024. Israel’s Supreme Court on Tuesday, June 25, ruled unanimously that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for military service, a decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition as Israel continues to wage war in Gaza. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)

Palestinians mourn their relatives killed in the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip at a hospital morgue in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians mourn their relatives killed in the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip at a hospital morgue in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinian medics treat a wounded child in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, at al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

Palestinian medics treat a wounded child in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, at al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

International criticism is growing over Israel’s campaign against Hamas in the Gaza Strip as Palestinians face severe and widespread hunger. The eight-month war has largely cut off the flow of food, medicine and basic goods to Gaza, and people there are now totally dependent on aid. The top United Nations court has concluded there is a “plausible risk of genocide” in Gaza — a charge Israel strongly denies.

Earlier Tuesday, Israel’s Supreme Court ruled unanimously that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for compulsory service, a landmark decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition.

The conscription decision comes as Israel and Hamas appear to moving farther apart on a cease-fire deal, and Israeli leaders are increasingly signaling that a war with the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah could be next.

Israel launched the war in Gaza after Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack, in which militants stormed into southern Israel, killed some 1,200 people — mostly civilians — and abducted about 250.

Since then, Israeli ground offensives and bombardments have killed more than 37,600 people in Gaza, according to the territory's Health Ministry, which does not distinguish between combatants and civilians in its count.

Currently:

— Israel's Supreme Court says ultra-Orthodox must serve in the military.

— Netanyahu says he won’t agree to a deal that ends the war in Gaza, testing the latest truce proposal.

— Experts say Gaza is at high risk of famine despite increased aid to the north.

— Iranian presidential candidates debate foreign policy ahead of Friday vote.

— A WHO official says the U.S.-built pier in Gaza not sufficient in delivering aid to Palestinians.

— Follow AP’s coverage of the war in Gaza at https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war.

Here’s the latest:

UNITED NATIONS – The U.N. food agency’s chief economist says designations about whether there's a famine in Gaza miss the point, because the situation is dire with nearly all 2.3 million Palestinians facing acute hunger.

The world needs to take action now, said Arif Husain of the World Food Program, citing the example of Somalia's massive famine in 2011 where 250,000 people died.

“Half of those people died before famine was declared,” Husain said.

He stressed to reporters Tuesday that averting famine requires more than food — it requires clean water, sanitation, health care and medicine on a sustained basis.

He was commenting on the new report by the global famine warning network that says the entire Gaza Strip faces “a high and sustained risk of famine” as long as the Israel-Hamas war continues and humanitarian access is restricted.

The Integrated Food Security Phase Classification says current available evidence doesn’t indicate famine is occurring, but about 96% of Gaza’s population face acute food insecurity with around 495,000 Palestinians facing “catastrophic levels through September.”

Husain said the threat of famine in northern Gaza was averted because aid was able to get in, including commercial deliveries. But there is now concern in the south where Israeli military operations are taking place and the main Rafah crossing from Egypt is closed, he said.

He said if the U.N. and aid organizations have access to places where it’s needed, “we can improve this situation, but if we don’t have access, then it is not possible.”

UNITED NATIONS — The United Nations is confirming that it urged Israel to protect humanitarian staff and facilitate aid deliveries in Gaza but said it “will not turn its back on the people of Gaza.”

U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric gave the response in a briefing with reporters Tuesday. The same day, two different U.N. officials said senior U.N. officials have warned Israel that they will suspend the world body’s aid operations across Gaza unless Israel acts urgently to better protect humanitarian workers. They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss ongoing negotiations with Israeli officials

Dujarric confirmed that the U.N. humanitarian coordinator in the Mideast, Muhannad Hadi, sent a letter to COGAT, the Israeli military body that oversees aid distribution in Gaza, on June 17 and further contacts took place Monday between U.N. security chief Giles Michaud and COGAT officials.

U.N. and other aid officials have complained for months that they have no way to communicate quickly and directly with Israeli forces on the ground, in contrast with the usual procedures — known as “deconfliction” — employed in conflict zones globally to protect aid workers from attack by combatants.

Dujarric was asked whether there was any response from Israel and replied, “If there had been a great improvement in the situation, I think you would know it.”

At the Security Council’s monthly Mideast meeting Tuesday, Israel again blamed the United Nations for not delivering aid in Gaza. Dujarric responded saying the risks to humanitarian staff from picking up aid at crossings from Israel “are unacceptable.”

“To blame those who are trying to help, who are there in Gaza without guns, without real security, to me is a bit far-fetched,” he said.

Dujarric was pressed several times on whether the U.N. would shut down its operations if conditions weren’t improved, and what effect that would have on Gaza.

“I’m not talking about suspending operations,” Dujarric replied at one point. “What I’m saying is that every day we assess the situation, how best to move forward.”

WASHINGTON — More than 6,800 metric tons, or 15 million pounds, of food and aid has flowed through the U.S. military-built pier in Gaza. However, the U.S. says very little of it has left the storage area and is stacking up on the beach due to security concerns among the aid agencies who deliver it throughout Gaza.

The United Nations wants Israel to do more to safeguard aid operations from strikes by its forces and to curb growing lawlessness hindering humanitarian workers.

On Tuesday when asked whether the military would suspend deliveries if the storage area ran out of space, Pentagon spokesman Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said “certainly we’ve got to take into account the capacity of the marshalling area.”

Ryder said there’s still room left for now, and the military is in communication with the U.N. World Food Program.

U.N. officials say the world body will stop delivering aid throughout Gaza if communications and protections for delivery workers do not improve.

BEIRUT — A spokesperson for the United Nations peacekeeping force deployed in south Lebanon along the border with Israel says three of their contractors were wounded Tuesday when gunfire hit their vehicle.

“Fortunately, there were no serious injuries,” said Kandice Ardiel, deputy spokesperson for the force known as UNIFIL.

Asked if the fire came from the Israeli side, Ardiel said: “At this point, we can’t determine the origin.”

She said the contractors were returning home from UNIFIL’s Sector West headquarters in the village of Chama when their vehicle was hit by gunfire. Chama is about 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) from the border with Israel.

Israel and the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah have been exchanging fire nearly every day since the war in Gaza began in October.

“We reiterate our condemnation of any attack on civilians, or any action that puts civilian lives in danger,” Ardiel said, adding that this includes locals who still live in their villages and provide essential services to support peacekeepers in their work. The fighting has displaced tens of thousands of people on both sides of the border.

Israeli strikes have killed more than 400 people in Lebanon, most of them Hezbollah and other militants, but also over 80 civilians and non-combatants. In northern Israel, 16 soldiers and 11 civilians have been killed by strikes launched from Lebanon.

“We have already seen too many injuries and deaths as a result of the exchanges of fire,” Ardiel said. She added that UNIFIL urges all actors involved in the conflict to cease their fire and work toward a diplomatic solution to bring the violence to an end.

UNIFIL was created to oversee the withdrawal of Israeli troops from southern Lebanon after Israel’s 1978 invasion. The U.N. expanded its mission following the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah, allowing peacekeepers to deploy along the Israeli border to help the Lebanese military extend its authority into the country’s south for the first time in decades.

CAIRO — Hamas says an Israeli airstrike in Gaza has killed the sister of its top political leader, Ismail Haniyeh, who is based abroad.

In a brief statement, the group said Zahr Haniyeh was killed in a strike Tuesday in Shati, a built-up refugee camp in Gaza City dating back to 1948.

Palestinian media reported that over a dozen members of Haniyeh’s extended family were killed in the strike. Gaza’s Health Ministry, which tracks Palestinian casualties from the war, has not said how many people were killed in the strike.

There was no immediate comment from the Israeli military.

Yahya Sinwar and Mohammed Deif are the top two Hamas leaders in Gaza and the apparent masterminds of the Oct. 7 attack. They are believed to be alive, possibly in the group’s massive labyrinth of tunnels.

Israeli airstrikes killed three of Haniyeh’s sons and four of his grandchildren in April. Israel said the three sons were Hamas operatives.

Later Tuesday, Haniyeh said Israel is wrong if it thinks that, by targeting his family members, Hamas will change its stance.

Regarding a cease-fire deal, he said Hamas expressed “full flexibility” and accepted all initiatives — on condition that these end the war and lead to a complete Israeli withdrawal from the Gaza Strip.

His statement said Hamas will continue to reject any deal that does not include an end to the war and “our stance will not change during any period.” Haniyeh said that all post-war plans should be an entirely Palestinian decision and “no one else has the right to interfere.”

Haniyeh is based in Qatar, which has long served as a mediator between Israel and Hamas. Israel has vowed to eliminate Hamas’ leaders wherever they are.

WASHINGTON — U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin pressed the need for Israel to avoid opening a second front against the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah as he met with Israel's Defense Minister Yoav Gallant at the Pentagon Tuesday.

“Another war between Israel and Hezbollah could easily become a regional war, with terrible consequences for the Middle East, and so diplomacy is by far the best way to prevent more escalation,” Austin said.

Gallant, in response, said in his remarks at the top of the meeting that “We are working closely together to achieve an agreement but we must also discuss readiness on every possible scenario.”

Iranian-backed Hezbollah began striking Israel almost immediately after Hamas’ Oct. 7 cross-border attack that triggered the war in Gaza. Israel and Hezbollah have been exchanging fire nearly every day since then, displacing tens of thousands of people on both sides of the border. The fighting has escalated in recent weeks, raising fears of a full-blown war.

Gallant is visiting Washington this week to speak with U.S. officials, and met with Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday.

WASHINGTON — Senior U.N. officials have told Israel they will suspend aid operations across Gaza unless urgent steps are taken to better protect humanitarian workers, two U.N. officials say.

A U.N. letter sent to senior Israeli officials this month said Israel must provide U.N. workers with direct communication with Israeli forces on the ground in Gaza, among other steps, the officials said.

They spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss ongoing negotiations with Israeli officials. The U.N. officials say there has been no final decision on suspending operations across Gaza and that talks with Israelis were ongoing.

The U.N. World Food Program has already suspended aid delivery from a U.S.-built pier in Gaza over security concerns.

The Israeli army declined to comment on the U.N. warning, and the Defense Ministry did not return requests for comment.

Associated Press writers Samy Magdy and Ellen Knickmeyer contributed.

JERUSALEM — The U.N. food agency says the latest findings by a leading authority on hunger crises confirm its own concerns about severe hunger in war-torn Gaza.

The World Food Program said Tuesday that “to truly turn the corner and prevent famine, adequate and sustained levels of humanitarian assistance must be provided,” including fresh food, clean water, sanitation and healthcare.

It was responding to the latest report from the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification, or IPC, an initiative first set up in 2004 during the famine in Somalia that now includes more than a dozen U.N. agencies, aid groups, governments and other bodies.

The IPC found that an influx of aid into northern Gaza earlier this year had eased a crisis there, but expressed concerns about the south following Israel’s invasion of the city of Rafah.

The IPC said the entire territory was still at “high risk” of famine and projected that over 495,000 people — over a fifth of the population — will experience the most severe level of hunger in the coming months.

The incursion into Rafah displaced over a million people, most of whom had already fled their homes elsewhere. It led to the closure of one border crossing and major disruptions at another, making it difficult to bring in aid.

The WFP said it was “deeply concerned that the much-reduced ability of humanitarian organizations to deliver critical assistance in the south is jeopardizing the progress made.”

It said the security vacuum in Gaza has fostered widespread lawlessness that makes it difficult to deliver aid.

“WFP now fears that southern Gaza could soon see the same catastrophic levels of hunger previously recorded in the northern areas,” it said.

GENEVA — The head of the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees said Tuesday that most of its donors have resumed funding and new ones have emerged, so it has enough cash through the end of August but faces a shortfall of up to $140 million by year-end.

Philippe Lazzarini, the commissioner-general of UNRWA, said an independent review of its operations has helped rebuild trust in the agency, which has broadened its donor base by adding contributor countries such as Algeria, Iraq, Jordan and Oman as well as individual giving from Singapore.

Speaking to reporters at the U.N. office in Geneva, Lazzarini said aid delivery is becoming “more and more complicated” and crossings into Gaza are far short of need and looting of delivery trucks is happening too often.

Israel’s allegations early this year that a dozen of UNRWA’s staffers had taken part in the Oct. 7 attacks led to the suspension of contributions by the United States and more than a dozen other countries. All but the U.S. and Britain have resumed their funding.

U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres tapped a former French foreign minister to lead a team that issued a report that reviewed UNRWA’s neutrality, and the results of an internal investigation are pending.

CAIRO — Hamas says an Israeli airstrike in Gaza has killed the sister of its top political leader, Ismail Haniyeh, who is based abroad.

In a brief statement, the group said Zahr Haniyeh was killed in a strike on Tuesday in Shati, a built-up refugee camp in Gaza City dating back to the 1948 war.

Palestinian media reported that over a dozen members of Haniyeh’s extended family were killed in the strike. Gaza’s Health Ministry, which tracks Palestinian casualties from the war, has not said how many people were killed in the strike.

There was no immediate comment from the Israeli military.

Israeli airstrikes killed three of Ismail Haniyeh’s sons and four of his grandchildren in April. Israel said the three sons were Hamas operatives.

Israel has vowed to eliminate Hamas’ leaders wherever they are.

Yahya Sinwar and Mohammed Deif, the top two Hamas leaders in Gaza and the apparent masterminds of the Oct. 7 attack, are believed to be alive and in hiding, possibly in the group’s massive labyrinth of tunnels.

Haniyeh is based in Qatar, which has long served as a mediator between Israel and Hamas.

JERUSALEM — A senior Israeli official says Israel and the United States will devote an unspecified number of weeks to trying to reach a new arrangement with Hezbollah before resorting to other means to bring calm to the Israel-Lebanon border.

Israel’s low-level conflict with the Lebanese militant group has escalated in recent weeks, raising fears of an all-out war.

“We will now dedicate long weeks … in an attempt to reach an arrangement” along the border, National Security Adviser Tzachi Hanegbi said Tuesday.

Hezbollah began attacking northern Israel in solidarity with Hamas shortly after the Palestinian militants’ Oct. 7 attack triggered the war in Gaza. Israel has responded with airstrikes, and the low-intensity conflict has driven tens of thousands of people from their homes on both sides of the border.

Speaking at the Herzliya Conference, an annual gathering of policymakers and analysts, Hanegbi said Hezbollah may find “a kind of ladder to climb down” as Israel shifts to less intensive operations in the southern Gaza city of Rafah.

“If there is no arrangement through diplomatic means, everybody understands that an arrangement is required through other means. But currently we prefer to focus on the diplomatic campaign," he said.

U.S. envoy Amos Hochstein met with Lebanese and Israeli leaders the week before to try to calm tensions. Hezbollah has said it will continue its attacks until there is a cease-fire in Gaza.

JERUSALEM — Israel’s Supreme Court ruled unanimously Tuesday that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for military service, a decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition as Israel continues to wage war in Gaza.

The court ruled that, in the absence of a law that distinguishes between Jewish seminary students and other draftees, Israel’s compulsory military service system applies to the ultra-Orthodox like any other citizens.

Under longstanding arrangements, ultra-Orthodox men have been exempt from the draft, which is compulsory for most Jewish men and women. These exemptions have long been a source of anger among the secular public, a divide that has widened during the war.

Politically powerful ultra-Orthodox parties, key partners in Netanyahu’s governing coalition, oppose any change in the current system. If the exemptions are ended, they could bolt the coalition, causing the government to collapse and leading to new elections.

The court decision comes at a sensitive time, as the war in Gaza drags on into its ninth month and the number of dead soldiers continues to mount.

CAIRO — Israeli strikes on Gaza City early Tuesday killed at least 21 people, including nine women and seven children, officials in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip said.

The strikes hit two schools-turned-shelters and a residential home, according to the Hamas-run Civil Defense, a rescue body that is often the first to respond after airstrikes.

The Israeli military said Hamas militants were operating inside the school compounds, accusing them of planning attacks against Israel and being involved in holding hostages taken from Israel.

A strike on the Abdel-Fattah Hamoud school in the Daraj neighborhood killed at least eight people from the same family, including five children and their parents, the Civil Defense said, adding that an 18-month-old and a 77-year-old woman were among the dead.

The group said a second strike hit the Asmaa school in Shati, a built-up refugee camp dating back to the 1948 war, killing at least 11 people, including five women and two children. The third strike hit a family house in the Shijaiyah neighborhood, killing two women, the civil defense said.

The third strike hit a family home in the Shijaiyah neighborhood, killing two women.

Israel has escalated its air raids on Gaza City, in the north, over the past week, killing dozens of people as Israeli ground forces continue battling Palestinian militants in the southern city of Rafah.

Israel launched its air and ground invasion of Gaza immediately after Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack, which killed some 1,200 people and took about 250 others hostage. The Israeli offensive has killed over 37,000 Palestinians and unleashed a humanitarian crisis.

Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident backdropped by the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident backdropped by the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Destroyed buildings stand in the coast of the Gaza Strip as seen from the Mediterranean Sea, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

U.S. Army soldiers stand next to trucks arriving loaded with humanitarian aid at the U.S.-built floating pier Trident before reaching the beach on the coast of the Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Leo Correa)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians search for bodies and survivors in the rubble of a residential building destroyed in an Israeli airstrike in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo /Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians mourn for their relative girl killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in the Maghazi refugee camp outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

Palestinians mourn for their relative girl killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in the Maghazi refugee camp outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

A woman holds the body of her daughter Zena Naser, killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building in Maghazi refugee camp, outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

A woman holds the body of her daughter Zena Naser, killed in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building in Maghazi refugee camp, outside the morgue of al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo/Abdel Kareem Hana)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

Eldar Avital, 12, left, joins pro-Israel supporters to condemn a violent protest the previous weekend outside Adas Torah synagogue as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

Eldar Avital, 12, left, joins pro-Israel supporters to condemn a violent protest the previous weekend outside Adas Torah synagogue as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

A Palestinian girl wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian girl wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

A Palestinian wounded in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, is brought to al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

An Allied Universal armed security guard crosses the street along with pro-Israel supporters as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. President Joe Biden has denounced violence that flared when opponents of the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza staged a protest at a Los Angeles synagogue during the weekend. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

An Allied Universal armed security guard crosses the street along with pro-Israel supporters as members of the Jewish community gather at Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday, June 24, 2024, in Los Angeles. President Joe Biden has denounced violence that flared when opponents of the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza staged a protest at a Los Angeles synagogue during the weekend. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

FILE - Israeli police officers remove an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man from the street during a protest against army recruitment in Jerusalem on June 2, 2024. Israel’s Supreme Court on Tuesday, June 25, ruled unanimously that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for military service, a decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition as Israel continues to wage war in Gaza. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)

FILE - Israeli police officers remove an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man from the street during a protest against army recruitment in Jerusalem on June 2, 2024. Israel’s Supreme Court on Tuesday, June 25, ruled unanimously that the military must begin drafting ultra-Orthodox men for military service, a decision that could lead to the collapse of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition as Israel continues to wage war in Gaza. (AP Photo/Leo Correa, File)

Palestinians mourn their relatives killed in the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip at a hospital morgue in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinians mourn their relatives killed in the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip at a hospital morgue in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Jehad Alshrafi)

Palestinian medics treat a wounded child in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, at al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

Palestinian medics treat a wounded child in an Israeli bombardment on a residential building owned by the Nasr family in Maghazi refugee camp, at al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, central Gaza Strip, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo/Saher Alghorra)

Crowdstrike is blaming a bug in an update that allowed its cybersecurity systems to push bad data out to millions of customer computers, setting off last week's global tech outage that grounded flights, took TV broadcasts off air and disrupted banks, hospitals and retailers.

Crowdstrike also outlined measures it would take to prevent the problem from recurring, including staggering the rollout of updates, giving customers more control over when and where they occur, and providing more details about the updates that it plans.

The company on Wednesday posted details online from its “preliminary post incident review ” of the outage, which caused chaos for the many businesses that pay for the cybersecurity firm's software services.

The problem involved an “undetected error” in the content configuration update for its Falcon platform affecting Windows machines, the Texas company said.

A bug in the content validation system allowed “problematic content data” to be deployed to Crowdstrike's customers. That triggered an “unexpected exception” that caused a Windows operating system crash, the company said.

As part of the new prevention measures, Crowdstrike said it's also beefing up internal testing as well as putting in place “a new check" to stop “this type of problematic content” from being deployed again.

CrowdStrike has said a “significant number” of the approximately 8.5 million computers that crashed on Friday, causing global disruptions, are back in operation as customers and regulators await a more detailed explanation of what went wrong.

Once its investigation is complete, Crowdstrike said that it will publicly release its full analysis of the meltdown.

The outage caused days of widespread technological havoc, highlighted how much of the world depends on a few key providers of computing services and drawn the attention of regulators who want more details on what went wrong.

Crowdstrike blames update for letting bad data slip through causing global tech outage

Crowdstrike blames update for letting bad data slip through causing global tech outage

Crowdstrike blames update for letting bad data slip through causing global tech outage

Crowdstrike blames update for letting bad data slip through causing global tech outage

A technician works on an information display near United Airlines gates at Chicago O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, July 19, 2024, after a faulty CrowdStrike update caused a major internet outage for computers running Microsoft Windows. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

A technician works on an information display near United Airlines gates at Chicago O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Friday, July 19, 2024, after a faulty CrowdStrike update caused a major internet outage for computers running Microsoft Windows. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

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