Israel intensifies bombing as fighting rages in Jabalia north of Gaza

The Israeli army announced on Friday that renewed fighting in Jabalia, a northern town in Gaza, is "perhaps the fiercest" in over seven months of conflict.–Photo courtesy Quds News Network

The Israeli army announced on Friday that renewed fighting in Jabalia, a northern town in Gaza, is “perhaps the fiercest” in over seven months of conflict.

In early January, the army had stated that it had “completed the dismantling of Hamas’ military framework in the northern Gaza Strip” and planned to shift its focus to the central and southern areas of the Palestinian territory.

However, intense clashes resumed in Jabalia less than a week ago. This town houses the largest refugee camp in the Gaza Strip, with a population exceeding 100,000 people.

“Hamas was in complete control here in Jabalia until we arrived a few days ago,” the Israeli army reported on Friday, noting a significant change since spokesman Daniel Hagari had claimed four months ago that resistance fighters were only operating sporadically and “without commanders” in the area.

The current fighting in Jabalia is described by the army as “perhaps the fiercest we have encountered” in this region since the onset of the offensive in the Gaza Strip, and they are now actively engaged in the town’s refugee camp.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced that he will reveal the date when Madrid will recognize a Palestinian state, in coordination with several EU partners, on Wednesday.

“We are in the process of coordinating with other countries to make a joint declaration,” Sanchez stated during an interview with the private Spanish television station La Sexta on Friday. This was in response to a question about whether this step would be taken on Tuesday, as previously mentioned by EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell.

“I believe that on the 22nd of May, I will be able to inform parliament of the date on which Spain will recognize the Palestinian state,” he added.

Viral video – Israeli Army officer blows up Gaza building to mark daughter’s birthday

In March, Sanchez had indicated that Spain, along with Ireland, Slovenia, and Malta, had agreed to take initial steps toward recognizing a Palestinian state alongside Israel, viewing a two-state solution as essential for achieving lasting peace.

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