What's going on in Israel today?

Rishi pledges Britain will stand by Israel in 'its darkest hour' and BBC admits error in ‘Gaza hospital’ coverage


Day 14, Friday 20 October (0900 Israel time)

“The terrorists of Hamas unleashed pure, unadulterated evil on the world. But sadly the Jewish people know perhaps better than anyone that there’s no limit to the depravity of people when they want to inflict pain on others."

Joe Biden addressed the people of America in a primetime, televised address last night, making the case for wartime aid to Israel and Ukraine. He described the current situation as an “inflection point.”

Biden will request $100 billion from Congress to deliver aid and resources to Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan, and the US border with Mexico.

“History has taught us that when terrorists don’t pay a price for their terror, when dictators don’t pay a price for their aggression, they cause more chaos and death and more destruction. They keep going. And the cost and the threat to America in the world keep rising,” Biden said.

Meanwhile, Rishi Sunak flew into Israel on Thursday morning and met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Isaac Herzog.

He told Netanyahu: “You described this as Israel’s darkest hour. Well, then it’s for me to say, I’m proud to stand here with you in Israel’s darkest hour, as your friend. We will stand with you in solidarity. We will stand with your people, and we also want you to win.”

Sunak then flew to Saudi Arabia for more talks, while Foreign secretary James Cleverly flew to Egypt, Turkey and Qatar “to help prevent the spread of conflict across the region.”

Egypt has started moving its concrete wall blocking the Rafa crossing into Gaza, after it agreed to transfer some aid into the strip.


Israel has said that there are at least 203 hostages held by Hamas in Gaza. Up to 30 are children, and at least ten are over the age of 60.

Most hostages are alive, but some bodies were also abducted to Gaza.


Overnight, Israel struck more than a hundred Hamas terror targets, including an underground tunnel, weapon warehouses, and dozens of operational command centres.

A Hamas naval operative was who took part in the massacre of Israeli civilians in southern Israel, Amjad Majed Muhammad Abu 'Odeh, was killed.


Wide-scale counterterrorism activity in the West Bank saw over 80 wanted suspects apprehended, including 63 Hamas terror operatives.

Israeli forces demolished the residence of a Hamas terrorist in the town of Qibya and apprehended a number of wanted suspects in the Nur Shams Camp on Wednesday night.

The IDF says that 524 wanted suspects have been apprehended  since October 7, over 330 of them operatives of Hamas. Over 50 weapons have also been confiscated.


Israel struck Lebanese positions last night. Residents of Kiryat Shmona are being evacuated to state funded guest houses, after a direct hit from a barrage of rockets yesterday from Lebanon.

Homes within 5km of the border are also being evacuated. Hamas’ Al Qasim brigades took responsibility for the rockets.

In response to Hezbollah fire of anti-tank missiles across the border yesterday, Israel carried out a number of attacks against Hezbollah infrastructure, including observation posts. Israeli fighter jets struck three terrorists who attempted to launch anti-tank missiles toward Israel.

The US has asked Israel not to preemptively strike Hezbollah, but offered reassurances that if Hezbollah strikes first they will assist Israel.

Demonstrations continue within Lebanon calling for Hezbollah to enter the war.


A US warship intercepted several missiles and drones possibly launched by Iranian-backed Houthis who are engaged in fighting in Yemen.

Missile launches and UAVs from Yemen were intercepted by the USS Carney destroyer were launched from Yemen to the north. There is a possibility they were launched at targets in Israel.


The BBC has been forced to admit “it was wrong to speculate” about the origin of the explosion in the Gaza hospital carpark. Its reporter had initially said "It's hard to see what else this could be really given the size of the explosion other than an Israeli air strike or several air strikes,” and added that in his experience as a reporter in Gaza he had never seen explosions of this scale caused by rockets being fired out of the territory.

The broadcaster maintains its policy of not referring to Hamas as terrorists, insisting that it allows it not to ‘take sides’, despite ever louder calls for them to do so.

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