Dozens of Palestinians martyred in overnight Israeli strikes as conflict enters 100th day

More than 100 Palestinians were martyred over the past 24 hours in Israel’s bombardment of Gaza, including a missile strike on a residential building in Rafah. An Israeli siege has sparked acute shortages of food, water, medicine and fuel in Gaza, where the health system is collapsing. The head of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, Philippe Lazzarini, said during a visit to the Gaza Strip on Saturday “the massive death, destruction, displacement, hunger, loss and grief of the last 100 days are staining our shared humanity”. He warned an entire generation of children in Gaza were being “traumatised”, diseases were spreading and the clock was “ticking fast towards famine”. Winter rains have exacerbated the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza, where the UN estimates 1.9 million — nearly 85 per cent of the population — have been displaced. Many have sought shelter in Rafah and other southern areas where the health ministry says there isn’t the infrastructure to support them. Israeli forces have arrested Dalal and Fatima Al-Arouri, the sisters of Saleh Al-Arouri, the senior Hamas official martyred in Beirut on January 2, Palestinian media reports, citing local sources. The two sisters were among several people arrested during Israeli raids on towns in Ramallah and el-Bireh in the occupied West Bank that took place at dawn on Sunday, report added. Separately, in a video verified by international media outlets, the son of one of the two sisters said that Israeli forces who entered his home to arrest his mother, assaulted him and vandalised the house, as well as confiscating photographs of his uncle, Saleh Al-Arouri.