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Israel-Hamas Conflict: Unraveling the Timeline and Critical Milestones

In the aftermath of an audacious surprise attack by Hamas terrorists on Israel, launched on October 7, the region remains on high alert, teetering on the brink of a broader conflict. In a shocking escalation, the terrorists infiltrated Israel through air, land, and sea, resulting in a grim toll on both sides of the Israel-Gaza border. The Israeli prime minister's office reports over 1,200 casualties in Israel, with 6,900 individuals sustaining injuries. Since the initiation of the conflict, 383 Israel Defense Forces soldiers have lost their lives, 68 of whom perished during the ground campaign.

On November 22, Israel's Cabinet greenlit a landmark deal proposed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, paving the way for the release of 50 hostages, predominantly women and children, during a four-day ceasefire. As part of the agreement, Israel will also release 150 Palestinian prisoners. The first phase of the hostage release will include three Americans, including a 3-year-old child, in accordance with a negotiation involving Hamas, Israel, Qatar, and the United States.

Notably, White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan disclosed on November 12 that at least nine Americans remain unaccounted for. Israeli authorities contend that Hamas is currently holding 236 hostages in Gaza. The Gaza Health Ministry, under Hamas control, reports a staggering toll of 14,532 casualties in Gaza, a consequence of Israel's retaliatory campaign and ground operations. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency notes that nearly 1.5 million people have been displaced in Gaza, with over 35,000 injuries.

Disturbingly, as of November 3, 67% of the deaths in Gaza comprised women and children, with thousands more sustaining injuries, as reported by various U.N. agencies, including the UNRWA. Meanwhile, in the West Bank, the Palestinian Ministry of Health documents 215 fatalities and over 2,500 injuries. Israeli and U.S. officials dispute the casualty figures provided by the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry, alleging an inflation of civilian casualties. Prime Minister Netanyahu has gone as far as stating that a significant number of the reported dead are, in fact, Hamas terrorists. The region remains fraught with tension and uncertainty as the conflict unfolds.

A month ago, a harrowing conflict erupted with a sneak attack by thousands of armed Hamas terrorists breaching the border security fence that separates Gaza from Israel. The assault was marked by brutal tactics, including the torture and indiscriminate gunning down of Israeli civilians in their homes, as well as surprise attacks on caught-off-guard soldiers at military bases. Some militants even stormed Israeli beaches on motorboats, while others descended from the sky via paragliders, launching a barbaric attack at an open-air music festival meant to celebrate "unity and love."

In response to the October 7 Hamas attack, which also involved thousands of missiles launched from the Gaza Strip, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) initiated a retaliatory campaign, bombarding Gaza with airstrikes. Israel, in turn, pledged to eradicate Hamas, the terrorist organization controlling Gaza and believed to have support from Iran. Here are key developments in the ongoing conflict:

Air raid sirens blare in Jerusalem around 6:30 a.m. local time, warning citizens of the ongoing attack. An estimated 2,200 rockets are fired toward southern and central Israel, including Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, by Hamas militants.Armed Hamas terrorists, many on motorcycles, storm blockaded areas, attacking and slaughtering people in kibbutzim and small towns.Video footage emerges showing Hamas militants taking Israeli citizens, including mothers, small children, and the elderly, hostage and carrying them across the Gaza border.Mohammed Deif, commander in chief of Hamas' military arm, Al Qassam Brigades, releases a video statement claiming responsibility for the attack.Israeli jet fighters launch retaliatory strikes in Gaza, targeting a high-rise residential building and the Al-Sousi Mosque in Gaza City.Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declares, "Israel is at war."U.S. President Joe Biden condemns Hamas' assault in a phone call with Netanyahu, pledging support for Israel's defense. In a televised address, Biden asserts, "Israel has a right to defend itself and its people."At least 30 Israeli police officers are killed in the fighting, primarily in Sderot, where Hamas gunmen seize control of the police station.

Israeli officials report ongoing hostilities in six locations, including the vulnerable town of Sderot, situated just 2 miles from the Gaza border, where a rocket has injured four people. Shocking videos circulate online, capturing an all-night music festival near the Gaza border being targeted by rockets and ground assaults from armed Hamas militants. Disturbingly, women and children are seen being forcibly taken away in vehicles and transported back into Gaza. The Israeli rescue service Zaka discloses that at least 260 bodies were recovered from the venue after the attack.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken affirms on ABC's "This Week" that the U.S. fully supports Israel, condemning the horrifying events as he states, "The world should be revolted at what it's seen." Air raid sirens intensify in northern Israel, prompting residents to seek shelter. The IDF asserts that at least two rockets were launched from Lebanon toward northern Israel, with one reportedly landing in Lebanese territory. In response, the IDF neutralizes terrorists who crossed from Lebanon into Israel, emphasizing its commitment to defending the country on all borders.

Tragically, a U.S. National Security Council official confirms that nine Americans lost their lives in Israel, a toll that would later escalate. The IDF intensifies its offensive, announcing airstrikes on 130 targets in the Gaza Strip. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant orders a "complete siege" of Gaza, involving the cutoff of electricity, and the blockage of fuel and food shipments from Israel.

In a historic move, the IDF mobilizes 300,000 reserves, marking the largest and swiftest call-up in Israel's history. In a chilling development, Hamas threatens to execute Israeli hostages one by one unless Israel halts its indiscriminate shelling of homes in Gaza. The U.S. confirms that an unspecified number of Americans are now hostages of Hamas, prompting President Biden to direct intelligence sharing and the deployment of additional experts to aid Israeli counterparts in hostage recovery efforts. Biden condemns the atrocities committed by Hamas, including the "slaughter" of men, women, entire families, and distressing reports of infants being killed. The situation continues to unfold with escalating gravity.

Israeli Minister of Defense Gallant embarks on a tour of southern Israel along the Gaza border, signaling a shift to a "full-scale response" to Hamas' surprise attack. He emphasizes the removal of all restrictions, asserting that Gaza will undergo a drastic transformation, and Hamas will rue their actions. The IDF issues a call for the evacuation of all residents of Gaza City, urging them to move south for their safety, as preparations for a massive ground campaign against hidden Hamas fighters, particularly in an extensive network of tunnels under residential neighborhoods, intensify.

Gallant underscores the Israeli military's commitment to minimizing civilian casualties. Simultaneously, the U.S. Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, meets with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Jordan, stressing the need to quell tensions in the West Bank and prevent the conflict from escalating. Blinken conveys condolences to the families of those killed in Gaza. President Biden engages with the families of Americans unaccounted for after the attack, and the first chartered flight evacuating Americans from Israel departs for Europe.

A tripartite agreement involving Egypt, Israel, and the United States permits foreigners in Gaza to pass through the Rafah border crossing into Egypt, triggering a rush to the southern border by Palestinians and foreigners seeking escape. However, no specific timeline for the border opening is established. The IDF announces preparations for an "integrated and coordinated attack" from air, sea, and land, with a focus on a substantial ground operation.

Human Rights Watch's Sari Bashi describes the dire situation in Gaza, highlighting challenges such as untreated water, food shortages, and electricity cuts. The number of U.S. citizens killed in the Hamas attack on Israel rises to 31, with at least 13 Americans still missing. Additionally, the Israel Defense Forces report that the number of hostages taken by Hamas has increased to 199. The region remains engulfed in a rapidly escalating crisis with profound humanitarian implications.

Hamas claims to be holding between 200 and 250 hostages, showcasing a video of one captive, 21-year-old Mia Shem, abducted during the Supernova music festival attack. Ronen Bar, director of Israel's Shin Bet security service, takes responsibility for the intelligence failure that facilitated the success of the Hamas attack, admitting an inability to generate sufficient warning.

The White House announces President Biden's planned visit to Israel, while the Pentagon confirms the heightened readiness of 2,000 U.S. troops for potential deployment to the Middle East. Israeli overnight air raids result in the death of at least 71 people and injuries to 50 others in Gaza, with a particularly devastating incident at al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza City. Conflicting claims emerge, with Palestinian officials attributing the incident to an Israeli airstrike, a charge the IDF denies. U.S. intelligence officials later confirm that Israel was not responsible for the hospital explosion, attributing it to a rocket launched by Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

Amid rocket threats and heightened security, President Biden arrives in Israel, greeted by Prime Minister Netanyahu at Ben Gurion Airport. During a joint appearance, Biden expresses pride in being present, underscoring the complex and tense situation unfolding in the region.

President Biden, upon returning from Israel, commends the courage and commitment of the people of Israel, pledging unwavering support and vowing to supply whatever is necessary for their defense. Prime Minister Netanyahu expresses gratitude for the enduring support.

Pope Francis, at the Vatican in Rome, appeals for peace in the Middle East, expressing concern over rising casualties and the desperate situation in Gaza. Meanwhile, Biden prepares to address the nation, outlining the U.S. response to the Hamas attacks on Israel.

During the return flight to Washington, Biden discusses securing an agreement for humanitarian aid, including the opening of the Rafah crossing gate in southern Gaza. He emphasizes successful negotiations, with aid expected to reach Gaza as early as Friday. In his prime-time address, Biden is anticipated to contextualize ongoing conflicts in the Middle East and Ukraine, detailing how U.S. resources will continue supporting both Israel and Ukraine.

Simultaneously, the IDF reports an increase in the number of Israeli hostages taken by Hamas, now totaling 203. Avi Dichter, a member of the Israeli security cabinet, notes the combined strength of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad in Gaza, estimating 50,000 fighters. The Israeli military, mobilizing over 400,000 soldiers, receives the "green light" to enter Gaza and execute its mission of "destroying Hamas."

On a positive note, Americans Judith Raanan, 59, and her daughter Natalie Raanan, 17, are released by Hamas to the Red Cross and safely return to Israel. However, the grim toll in Gaza continues to rise, with the Palestinian Health Authority reporting a death toll exceeding 5,000 in the 16th day of the war.

Two elderly Israeli hostages, Yocheved Lifshitz (85) and Nurit Cooper (79), both from Kibbutz Nir Oz, have been released by Hamas. The Red Cross assisted in their transport out of Gaza, and they have safely returned to Israel. The Israeli military reported that at least 222 hostages were taken by Hamas since October 7. Additionally, two American hostages, a mother and daughter, have been released.

Prime Minister Netanyahu announces a "new phase" in the war on Hamas, involving increased aerial attacks and broader, sustained ground operations. The tragic death of Shani Luk, a 23-year-old German-Israeli woman kidnapped by Hamas on October 7, is confirmed by both the Israeli Foreign Ministry and the German government. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz condemns the act, emphasizing the barbarity behind the Hamas attack and affirming Israel's right to defend itself.

Gaza's Jabalia refugee camp, the most populous in the region, is hit by a second airstrike, according to the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry. The IDF confirms a strike on November 1, targeting a Hamas command and control complex in Jabalia, resulting in the deaths of Hamas fighters. The IDF asserts that Hamas deliberately places its terror infrastructure among civilian buildings, endangering Gazan civilians, and urges residents to evacuate for their safety. The IDF also takes responsibility for the first strike on October 31, claiming it killed a Hamas official involved in the October 7 attack on Israel.

The border crossing between Gaza and Egypt opened on November 1, permitting the exit of some foreign nationals and injured Gaza residents for the first time since the start of the Israel-Hamas war on October 7. Seventeen ambulances, each carrying an injured Gazan, crossed into Egypt. The Rafah border crossing, controlled by Egypt, was expected to allow approximately 500 foreign passport holders to exit. At least 110 dual nationals have confirmed to have crossed into Egypt.

Hamas released two videos claiming to show its fighters emerging from tunnels to engage in combat. The exact time and location of the videos remain unverified. In Washington, D.C., thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters gathered at Freedom Plaza, calling for a cease-fire and an end to the siege on the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile, the Israeli Air Force continued its bombing campaign in Gaza, targeting around 450 locations overnight. Israeli forces captured a Hamas compound, including underground tunnels, training areas, and observation posts, as per the IDF's statement on Telegram. The exact location of the compound was not disclosed, and ABC News could not immediately verify the IDF's claims. Israel, unyielding in its advance, reported that several Hamas terrorists were killed during the operation.

The Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry stated that at least 10,022 people have died in Gaza since the onset of the Israel-Hamas war on October 7. Despite U.S. officials' calls for humanitarian pauses to facilitate aid delivery, Israel showed no signs of slowing its military operations. In an exclusive interview with ABC News, Prime Minister Netanyahu reiterated his rejection of a cease-fire in Gaza unless hostages are released, emphasizing his stance even after discussions with President Biden.

The border crossing between Gaza and Egypt opened on November 1, permitting the exit of some foreign nationals and injured Gaza residents for the first time since the start of the Israel-Hamas war on October 7. Seventeen ambulances, each carrying an injured Gazan, crossed into Egypt. The Rafah border crossing, controlled by Egypt, was expected to allow approximately 500 foreign passport holders to exit. At least 110 dual nationals have confirmed to have crossed into Egypt.

Hamas released two videos claiming to show its fighters emerging from tunnels to engage in combat. The exact time and location of the videos remain unverified. In Washington, D.C., thousands of pro-Palestinian protesters gathered at Freedom Plaza, calling for a cease-fire and an end to the siege on the Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile, the Israeli Air Force continued its bombing campaign in Gaza, targeting around 450 locations overnight. Israeli forces captured a Hamas compound, including underground tunnels, training areas, and observation posts, as per the IDF's statement on Telegram. The exact location of the compound was not disclosed, and ABC News could not immediately verify the IDF's claims. Israel, unyielding in its advance, reported that several Hamas terrorists were killed during the operation.

The Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry stated that at least 10,022 people have died in Gaza since the onset of the Israel-Hamas war on October 7. Despite U.S. officials' calls for humanitarian pauses to facilitate aid delivery, Israel showed no signs of slowing its military operations. In an exclusive interview with ABC News, Prime Minister Netanyahu reiterated his rejection of a cease-fire in Gaza unless hostages are released, emphasizing his stance even after discussions with President Biden.

The situation you've described is deeply distressing. However, it doesn't involve a question about the designation of a terrorist organization. If you have any other inquiries or if there's a specific topic you'd like information on, feel free to let me know.

Over the weekend, a joint mission led by the United Nations and the Palestine Red Crescent Society, under the World Health Organization's guidance, successfully evacuated 31 babies from the besieged Al-Shifa Hospital in northern Gaza to Al-Helal Al-Emarati Maternity Hospital in southern Gaza. While 28 of these babies arrived in Egypt for specialized care, three in stable condition continue to receive treatment in Gaza. Unfortunately, Al-Qaida has seized upon the dire situation, releasing a statement calling for attacks on U.S. and Israeli targets, particularly embassies, citing Gaza's Al-Shifa Hospital, 9/11, and Benghazi.

Amidst the escalating crisis, at least three hospitals in Gaza, including Al-Shifa Hospital, Indonesian Hospital, and Al-Ahli Hospital in northern Gaza, have sought assistance for patient evacuations. The World Health Organization is actively involved in planning these evacuations, considering them a last resort.

Tragically, three doctors lost their lives in a strike on northern Gaza's Al-Awda Hospital, according to Doctors Without Borders, who emphasized that only medical personnel, patients, and the injured were present at the time of the attack.

Prime Minister Netanyahu, addressing a Cabinet meeting, declared that Israel's war against Hamas will persist beyond any cease-fire. He articulated that the war will endure until Hamas is dismantled, all hostages are safely returned, and Israel ensures that Gaza no longer poses a threat.

In a significant development, Israel's Cabinet approved a deal for the release of at least 50 hostages over a four-day pause in hostilities, alongside the release of 150 Palestinian prisoners. Netanyahu underscored the government's commitment to continuing the fight for the return of all hostages, the elimination of Hamas, and the assurance that Gaza does not pose a future threat to Israel. As part of this deal, three Americans, including a 3-year-old, are expected to be among the initial group of hostages released, in a negotiated agreement involving Hamas, Israel, Qatar, and the United States.

President Biden issues a statement expressing gratitude to Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani of Qatar and President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi of Egypt for their crucial leadership in brokering a deal between Hamas and Israel for the release of hostages. He also acknowledges Prime Minister Netanyahu's commitment to the temporary pause facilitating the implementation of the deal and expresses determination to continue efforts until all hostages, including additional American hostages, are released.

However, despite the agreement with Hamas for a temporary pause in hostilities linked to the hostage release, the Israeli military persists in bombarding the Gaza Strip later in the morning.

In conclusion, the complex and tense situation between Israel and Hamas continues to unfold with President Biden expressing gratitude for diplomatic efforts aimed at securing the release of hostages. Despite the agreement for a temporary pause in hostilities, the Israeli military's ongoing actions in the Gaza Strip raise questions about the stability of the proposed deal. The evolving dynamics underscore the challenges in achieving a lasting resolution to the conflict, leaving the region in a state of uncertainty and highlighting the intricate nature of negotiations in the midst of ongoing hostilities.