Israel has killed over 100 aid workers in Gaza over the past week as its military siege of al-Shifa Hospital continues. Meanwhile, the Netanyahu government continues planning for an invasion of Rafah.


  • 31,988 + killed* and at least 74,188 wounded in the Gaza Strip.
  • 435+ Palestinians killed in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.**
  • Israel revises its estimated October 7 death toll down from 1,400 to 1,147.
  • 594 Israeli soldiers killed since October 7, and at least 3,221 injured.***

*Gaza’s Ministry of Health confirmed this figure on Telegram channel. Some rights groups put the death toll number at more than 40,000 when accounting for those presumed dead.

** The death toll in West Bank and Jerusalem is not updated regularly. According to PA’s Ministry of Health on March 17, this is the latest figure.

*** This figure is released by the Israeli military, showing the soldiers whose names “were allowed to be published.”

Key Developments 

  • Over 100 aid workers have been killed and dozens wounded over the past week in eight attacks carried out by Israeli forces, according to the Government Media Office in Gaza.
  • Hamas says Israel’s response to ceasefire proposal was ‘negative’
  • Video of burned 4-year-old girl displaced from al-Shifa fuels anger on social media
  • Hamas denies Israel’s claim its fighters were killed at al-Shifa
  • Palestine Football Association urges FIFA sanctions against Israel
  • Canada confirms halting arms shipments to Israel, reports Wafa
  • World Bank: Northern Gaza faces imminent famine
  • Israeli forces kill 7 Palestinians in occupied West Bank. 
  • PRCS: Four Palestinian men killed by Israeli drone attack on Nur Shams refugee camp in the occupied West Bank
  • Palestinian Ministry of Health: At least 65 Palestinians killed in Israeli attacks in 24 hours
  • OCHA: Israel orders 25 patients to return to Gaza from East Jerusalem hospitals.
  • Netanyahu: Preparations still underway for Rafah invasion. 
  • Almost 70 former U.S. officials, diplomats, and military officers urge Biden to take firmer stance with Israel over its actions in Gaza and West Bank. 

Al Shifa update

The Gaza Strip’s largest hospital before Israel decimated it in November, al-Shifa, is still under military siege following yet another violent Israeli attack on the medical facility on Monday.

According to Al Jazeera, the Israeli military says it has killed 90 people during its raid on Gaza’s al-Shifa Hospital, as displaced Palestinians sheltering in the facility described lengthy detentions and abuse.

Emergency surgeon Mads Gilbert, who worked at the hospital during previous wars, recounted harrowing details provided by his former colleagues at the medical compound after Israel’s latest raid to Al Jazeera.

“Medical staff have been arrested and left for hours in the cold.” Israeli forces scanned their faces with a camera before being taken for what they described as “humiliating investigations,” Gilbert said.

Israel’s Genocide War in Gaza Continues

New Poll; Decline in levels of support for Hamas in both the Gaza Strip and the West Bank

Gazan support for a two-state-solution doubled since December.

With Israel’s Genocide in Gaza & humanitarian conditions worsening, support for Hamas declines in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip; and as support for armed struggle drops in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, support for the two-state solution rises in the Gaza Strip only. Nonetheless, wide popular support for October the 7th offensive remains unchanged and the standing of the Palestinian Authority and its leadership remains extremely weak  
The data also showed a clear drop in support for armed resistance as the best means of achieving a Palestinian State from its peak in December. 

According to recent polling, the proportion of Gazans who support a two-state solution has nearly doubled since December, from 35% to 62%. The polling, conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PCPSR), was conducted between March 5 and 10 in the West Bank and areas of the Gaza Strip where there was “no ongoing daily fighting.” The PCPSR conducted previous surveys in September and December 2023, during which the change in support for a two-state solution by Gazans was minimal, 34% to 35%, respectively. Compared to Gaza, support for a two-state solution in the West Bank barely grew, from 30% in Septemeber 2023 to 33% by December and 34% by March. The PCPSR links support for a two-state solution to the feasibility of the solution and the chances of a Palestinian state. The data also showed a clear drop-in support for armed resistance as the best means of achieving a Palestinian State from its peak in December. In December, support for armed resistance across the Palestinian Territories was 63%, 68% in the West Bank and 56% in the Gaza Strip. See the full poll in , In Arabic Here, in English Here

​​Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday said his government will soon approve a plan for evacuating civilians from Rafah and that a planned military offensive into the area would proceed “to complete the victory over Hamas.” In a message to Israeli citizens, Netanyahu said he told President Biden “it is impossible to complete the victory without the IDF entering Rafah” and said that “Israel always did what was essential for our safety, and we will do so this time as well,” but suggested an operation into Rafah was not imminent. “While we are preparing to enter Rafah, which will take some time, we continue to operate with all our might,” he said. CNN reports. 

Israel’s response to Hamas’s latest counterproposal on a ceasefire and hostage release deal “was negative in general” and did not meet the group’s demands, according to Hamas spokesperson Osama Hamdan. “In fact, they [Israel] backed away from agreements previously made to the mediators,” Hamdan said yesterday at a press conference in Beirut. He added it was a “continuation of their policy of procrastination, which could hamper the negotiations or even lead them to a dead end.” CNN reports. 

Israel’s Supreme Court has temporarily halted a government plan to send a group of Palestinian patients being treated in hospitals in East Jerusalem and Tel Aviv back to Gaza. The decision follows a petition by the Israeli non-profit organization Physicians for Human Rights Israel. Among the patients are five newborn babies and their mothers and cancer patients now in remission. Jeremy Diamond, Kareem Khadder, Mick Krever, and Abeer Salman report for CNN.

Israeli security officials are quietly developing a plan to distribute aid in Gaza that could eventually create a Palestinian-led governing authority there, Israeli and Arab officials said, prompting fierce backlash from Hamas and intensifying divisions in Israel’s war cabinet. According to some of the officials, a top Israeli defense official has held talks with Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, and Jordan to build regional support for an emerging effort to enlist Palestinian leaders and businesspeople who have no links to Hamas in distributing aid. When the war ends, the people in charge of aid would assume authority to govern, bolstered by security forces funded by wealthy Arab governments, the officials said. Summer Said, Dov Lieber, and Benoit Faucon report for the Wall Street Journal.

The Israeli military yesterday said that it had detained a senior Hamas leader in Gaza who it says was involved in the 2014 kidnapping and killing of three Israeli teens, a case that shook the nation and set off a wave of violence that led to a 50-day war.Yesterday, the Israeli military said that its forces had arrested Mahmoud Qawasmeh during a raid on the Al-Shifa Hospital, before transferring him to Israel for interrogation. Hamas has not commented at the time of writing. Cassandra Vinograd reports for the New York Times.


Blinken Meets With Arab Foreign Ministers in Cairo. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s talks today (WaPo) with foreign ministers of Arab countries in Egypt come after the United States put forth (The National) a draft resolution at the UN Security Council calling for an “immediate cease-fire linked to the release of hostages” in the Gaza Strip. This is Blinken’s sixth trip to the region since October 7; he was in Saudi Arabia yesterday and is also traveling to Israel. U.S./Israel: Israel submitted written assurances (WaPo) to the U.S. State Department that it is not using U.S.-supplied equipment to violate international humanitarian or U.S. human rights law. The State Department is due to assess whether those assurances are credible by early May and then will report to Congress.

Netanyahu spoke virtually with Republican senators yesterday during a closed-door meeting, but Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) declined a request by Netanyahu to address the Senate Democratic Caucus. A spokesperson for Schumer said that Netanyahu had offered to speak to the Democrats as well, but Schumer declined, saying Schumer “made it clear that he does not think these discussions should happen in a partisan manner. That’s not helpful to Israel.” The split-screen underscores cracks in what was once rock-solid bipartisan support for Israel’s government. Sahil Kapur and Frank Thorp V report for NBC News.

Scoop: House Republicans weighs inviting Netanyahu to address Congress. House Republicans are considering inviting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address Congress, Axios has learned

It’s a response to harsh criticism of Netanyahu from Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) last week.

“Accepting a Republican invitation to address Congress would be “brilliant,” destroying bipartisan support for Israel, deepening the rift with Pres Biden, provoking massive anti-Israel demos in Washington, and aligning Israel with MAGA isolationists.” @Martin_Indyk

The United States has submitted a draft resolution to the U.N. Security Council calling for “an immediate ceasefire tied to the release of hostages” in Gaza, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said yesterday in Saudi Arabia. In an interview with Al-Hadath, a Saudi-run news channel, Blinken said he hoped other countries would support the U.S.-proposed resolution, saying, “I think that would send a strong message, a strong signal.” In the interview, Blinken said that negotiations mediated by Egypt and Qatar between Hamas and Israel were “getting closer” to reaching an agreement. “I think the gaps are narrowing, and I think an agreement is very much possible,” he said. Victoria Kim reports for the New York Times.

Blinken met with President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi after arriving in Egypt today, continuing his sixth swing through the Middle East in a diplomatic push for a temporary Gaza ceasefire that the United States is also seeking through its U.N. resolution. Blinken will later join several Arab foreign ministers to discuss how Gaza could be governed and kept secure after Israel finishes its military campaign there, as well as increasing aid to Gaza and planning for the aftermath of the war. Other attendees will include foreign ministers from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority. State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said. Michael Crowley reports for the New York Times.

The State Department has received required written assurances from Israel ahead of Sunday’s deadline, stating that its use of U.S-supplied defense equipment does not violate international humanitarian or U.S. human rights law, according to U.S. and Israeli officials. The department now has until early May to formally assess whether those assurances are “credible and reliable” and report to Congress under a national security memorandum issued by President Biden in February. If Israel’s pledges are found wanting, Biden may suspend further U.S. arms transfers. Karen DeYoung and John Hudson report for the Washington Post.

The United States and the Royal Jordanian Air Force conducted airdrops into Gaza yesterday, providing 6,000 pounds of food “including rice, flour, milk, pasta and canned foods.” 

What Biden Would Do if He Were Serious About Ending the War in Gaza
A former Israeli peace negotiator says the president’s response has “failed to meet even the lowest of low expectations.”

“Netanyahu is going to go out to the cameras and say, ‘We have a 42-day pause and I’m preparing now to call up the reservists. Because on day 43, we’re going into Rafah.’ How do you expect Hamas to agree to that?”

The administration hasn’t said what would happen after a temporary ceasefire ends. “After six weeks, then what?” Ford asks. “The answer is implicit that the fighting resumes, as it did last time. How you’re going to maintain sustainable humanitarian access if the fighting flares up again after six weeks, they do not explain.”

Levy said the United States should put forward a ceasefire deal that actually has a chance of being accepted by both sides. With a six-week deal, Levy explained, Netanyahu “is going to go out to the cameras and say, ‘We have a 42-day pause and I’m preparing now to call up the reservists. Because on day 43, we’re going into Rafah.’ How do you expect Hamas to agree to that?”


Canada has not approved new arms export permits to Israel since Jan. 8 and will continue the freeze until Ottawa can ensure the weapons are used in accordance with Canadian law, the government said yesterday. The export permits that were approved before Jan. 8 remain in effect, the office of Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said, adding, “Canada has one of the most rigorous export permit regimes in the world. There are no open permits for exports of lethal goods to Israel. Reuters reports.