Heavy Fighting in Gaza as G7 and Arab Powers Urge Truce

Heavy Fighting in Gaza as G7 and Arab Powers Urge Truce
Heavy Fighting in Gaza as G7 and Arab Powers Urge Truce

Heavy fighting rocked Gaza after G7 and Arab powers urged both Israel and Hamas to agree to a truce and hostage release deal outlined by US President Joe Biden.

Mediator Qatar said it had yet to see statements from either side "that give us a lot of confidence", but the foreign ministry said Doha was "working with both sides on proposals on the table".

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has stressed that fighting would only have to cease temporarily to free the captives, and that Israel still plans to destroy Hamas.

A statement from the premier's office said Israel's war cabinet was meeting in Jerusalem, but no further details were given.

Hamas, which has long ruled the Palestinian territory of 2.4 million people, said it viewed Biden's outline "positively".

But a senior Hamas official in Beirut accused Israel of seeking "endless" truce negotiations, and repeated the group's position rejecting any deal that excludes a permanent ceasefire.

Hamas has stuck to that position in months of intermittent talks involving US, Qatari and Egyptian mediators.

Those three countries have now urged both sides to agree to a truce deal, as have Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan.

The Gaza war raged on unabated, with the Israeli military reporting its fighter jets struck around 65 targets across Gaza and that troops located tunnel shafts and weapons in the southern city of Rafah.

It also said warplanes and ground forces were attacking targets in the Bureij area in central Gaza.

Four bodies were retrieved from a bombed house in Bureij, and three more from a destroyed building in Gaza City, the civil defense agency said.

Gaza's government media office said another Israeli strike killed eight police officers in Deir al-Balah.

Israel's bombardment and ground offensive have killed at least 36,550 people in Gaza, also mostly civilians, according to the Hamas-run territory's health ministry.