World news

Fire breaks out on cathedral spire in France’s Normandy region

Smoke billows from the spire of Rouen Cathedral in Rouen, northern France on July 11, 2024. (Patrick Streiff/AFP via Getty Images)

(LONDON) — A fire broke out and was extinguished on Thursday on the spire of a cathedral in Rouen, France, the capital of the Normandy region, local emergency officials said.

Fire officials said the blaze had been put out, saying it appeared from an initial investigation that it had been the plastic canopy that covered the spire that was on fire.

The gothic cathedral had been evacuated, and more than 60 firefighters were at the scene, police officials in Normandy said.

Black smoke and flames could be seen in photos taken midday Thursday. The section where the cathedral’s spire appeared to be on fire had been wrapped in scaffolding.

Fire officials said they would check on the stability of the scaffolding, along with possible water damage to the interior of the cathedral.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

China responds to NATO accusations saying Beijing is ‘enabler’ of Russian war

Rainer Puster / EyeEm/Getty Images

(HONG KONG and LONDON) — A Chinese official rejected on Thursday an accusation from NATO members, who said that Beijing has become a “decisive enabler” of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

A spokesperson for China’s Mission to the European Union said a declaration issued on Wednesday by NATO members was “filled with Cold War mentality and belligerent rhetoric.”

“We never provide lethal weapons to either party of the conflict, and exercise strict export control on dual-use goods including civilian drones,” the spokesperson said in published remarks.

NATO members, who are in Washington for a summit, had included the accusations against China as part of a wide-ranging declaration. The document said China’s international ambitions and efforts “continue to challenge our interests, security and values.”

The declaration also included direct references to what NATO members described as China’s “deepening strategic partnership” with Russia.

That relationship, which NATO said was “mutually reinforcing attempts to undercut and reshape the rules-based international order,” was a cause “for profound concern,” the 32-member alliance wrote in the declaration published Wednesday.

“The PRC has become a decisive enabler of Russia’s war against Ukraine through its so-called ‘no limits’ partnership and its large-scale support for Russia’s defence industrial base,” the declaration said, using an acronym for the People’s Republic of China. “This increases the threat Russia poses to its neighbours and to Euro-Atlantic security.”

NATO members said China supplied Russia with dual-use materials, including components used for building weapons. China also supplied equipment and raw materials that “serve as inputs for Russia’s defence sector,” the declaration said.

“The PRC cannot enable the largest war in Europe in recent history without this negatively impacting its interests and reputation,” the declaration said.

China, using language similar to its previous statements, characterized its trade with Russia as “normal.” The spokesperson said the NATO declaration included “obvious lies and smears,” which China was “firmly” rejecting.

“The normal trade flows between China and Russia does not target any third party, nor should it be subject to disruption or coercion,” the Chinese spokesperson said.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

Israel-Gaza live updates: Israel strikes Syrian military infrastructure, IDF says

Tents sheltering displaced Palestinians in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip are pictured on June 4, 2024 amid the ongoing conflict in the Palestinian territory between Israel and Hamas. (Photo by EYAD BABA/AFP via Getty Images)

(NEW YORK) — As the Israel-Hamas war continues, efforts to secure the release of hostages taken by the terrorist organization are ongoing, and Israeli forces have launched an assault in Khan Younis in southern Gaza.

Here is how the news is developing:

Jul 10, 2024, 9:28 AM EDT
Israel strikes Syrian military infrastructure, IDF says

The Israel Defense Forces struck Syrian military infrastructure on Wednesday, the military said.

“A short while ago, IDF tanks and artillery struck military infrastructure that was used by the Syrian military, which violated the Disengagement Agreement between Israel and Syria (1974) in the buffer zone,” IDF said on messaging app Telegram.

Israel added that it held the Syrian military “responsible.”

“The IDF holds the Syrian military responsible for all activities occurring within its territory and will not allow any attempts to violate Israeli sovereignty,” the IDF said.

Jul 09, 2024, 4:54 PM EDT
19 people killed in Israeli airstrike on school, Palestinian officials say

At least 19 people were killed in an Israeli strike on a school housing displaced people in Gaza, the apparent fourth time it has done so within the last four days.

The Israel Defense Forces said they were targeting Hamas and other militants in all of the strikes and the IDF is looking into Tuesday’s strike. Dozens of people were reported killed in the strikes -– including women and children.

One child told ABC News he lost his father, cousin and two uncles in Tuesday’s strike. He broke down as he described what happened, saying was the only survivor.

The U.N.’s Human Rights Office said this week they were “appalled” to see a new round of evacuation orders issued throughout the strip, including to “where IDF military operations are ongoing and where civilians continue to be killed and injured.” The U.N. said nowhere is safe in Gaza.

-ABC News’ Matt Rivers, Victoria Beaule and Guy Davies

Jul 09, 2024, 3:09 PM EDT
50 killed in Gaza City amid IDF operations

Amid ongoing Israel Defense Forces’ operations in Gaza City, 50 people were killed and another 130 were injured in the last 24 hours, according to the Hamas-run Gaza Ministry of Health.

Israeli forces continue to operate in Gaza City, specifically in the Shejaiya neighborhood, the IDF confirmed in two separate releases issued Tuesday.

-ABC News’ Jordana Miller and Diaa Ostaz

Jul 09, 2024, 3:07 PM EDT
UN experts declare famine has spread throughout Gaza Strip

United Nations experts have declared that a famine has spread throughout the Gaza Strip.

Of Gaza’s 36 hospitals, only 13 are “partially functioning,” the UN World Health Organization spokesperson Tarik Jasarevic said Tuesday.

In northern Gaza’s Kamal Adwan hospital alone, 60 cases of severe acute malnutrition were detected last week, according to the U.N. World Health Organization.

“Fayez Ataya, who was barely six months old, died on 30 May 2024 and 13-year-old Abdulqader Al-Serhi died on 1 June 2024 at the Al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir Al-Balah. Nine-year-old Ahmad Abu Reida died on 3 June 2024 in the tent sheltering his displaced family in Al-Mawasi, Khan Younis. All three children died from malnutrition and lack of access to adequate healthcare,” U.N. experts said.

“With the death of these children from starvation despite medical treatment in central Gaza, there is no doubt that famine has spread from northern Gaza into central and southern Gaza,” U.N. experts said.

-ABC News’ Emmanuelle Saliba and Camilla Alcini

Jul 08, 2024, 7:50 PM EDT
More flexibility from Hamas in cease-fire and hostage talks: US officials

With CIA Director Bill Burns and White House Middle East adviser Brett McGurk working to advance a cease-fire and hostage release deal in the Middle East, two U.S. officials familiar with the negotiations said they see more flexibility from Hamas than they did previously.

The officials assessed this is coming from Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar; however, they stopped short of saying they felt a breakthrough was in the offing.

The officials also said they believe Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is still committed to achieving a deal.

The American delegation headed by Burns arrived in Cairo earlier Monday to continue Gaza cease-fire talks, Egyptian state TV reported.

Jul 08, 2024, 6:30 PM EDT
Latest Gaza evacuation order will affect life-saving care: WHO

A new evacuation order in Gaza will “further impede delivery of very limited life-saving care,” the World Health Organization said Monday.

The Israel Defense Forces issued an evacuation order in Gaza City on Monday, telling people to go to designated safe zones.

Al-Ahli and Patients’ Friendly hospitals are now “out of service,” with some patients referred to hospitals that are experiencing shortages of beds and medical supplies, according to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. Multiple health care centers are also located within the evacuation zone, while three hospitals are close by, he said.

“These key hospitals and medical facilities could quickly become non-functional due to hostilities in their vicinity or obstruction to access,” he said in a statement.

The IDF said Monday it launched a “counterterrorism operation in Gaza City targeting Hamas and Islamic Jihad infrastructure.”

“Civilians were warned and a route was opened for their safe evacuation,” the IDF said.

Jul 08, 2024, 1:34 PM EDT
Israel says it’s killed another Hezbollah leader in Lebanon

Israeli forces claimed Monday they have killed another Hezbollah leader in southern Lebanon.

An Israel Defense Forces aircraft “struck and eliminated the Hezbollah terrorist Mustafa Hassan Salman in the area of Qlaileh,” the military said in a statement.

The IDF accused Salman of participating in the “planning and execution of numerous terror attacks” against Israel.

Last week, the IDF said it assassinated Muhammad Ni’Mah Nasser, one of the most senior Hezbollah commanders killed since the group began firing at Israel in solidarity with Gaza on Oct. 8.

Attacks between Israel and Hezbollah forces continued Monday.

Jul 08, 2024, 1:19 PM EDT
Hostages and Missing Families Forum asks Netanyahu to delay US trip

The Hostages and Missing Families Forum has asked Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to delay his trip to the United States at the end of the month and stay in Israel to “prioritize finalizing a hostage release deal.”

Netanyahu is currently scheduled to address a joint session of the U.S. Congress on July 24.

“For 9 months, 120 innocent men, women, children, and elderly have been held captive in Gaza by Hamas,” the Hostages Families Forum said in a statement on Monday. “These hostages endure unimaginable horrors daily. Every moment in captivity is a risk to their lives and well-being.”

Jul 08, 2024, 12:31 PM EDT
Israeli forces attacking in Khan Younis, Gaza City and Rafah

Israeli forces have been attacking in Rafah, Khan Younis and Gaza City, the Israel Defense Forces said Monday.

Over the past day in Rafah, Israeli troops “operated to eliminate more than 30 terrorists who posed a threat to IDF troops,” IDF said in a statement.

Jul 07, 2024, 5:07 PM EDT
American hurt by Hezbollah rocket fire: US Embassy

A U.S. citizen was injured Sunday by one of multiple rockets fired into Israel from Lebanon by the terrorist group Hezbollah, according to the U.S. embassy in Israel.

Embassy officials said they received information regarding the injured private U.S. citizen. The embassy confirmed the individual does not work for the U.S. government.

The embassy was working to gather more information on the injured person, officials said.

Further details about the incident were not immediately disclosed.

-ABC News’ Jordana Miller

Jul 06, 2024, 6:26 PM EDT
IDF gives more details on strike on school

Israel Defense Forces released details about a strike on a school in Nuseirat refugee camp that Gaza officials said killed 16 and wounded at least 50.

The IDF claimed its intelligence found that the site allegedly “served as a hideout and operational infrastructure from which attacks against IDF troops operating in the Gaza Strip were directed and carried out.”

“Prior to the strike, numerous steps were taken in order to mitigate the risk of harming civilians, including the use of precise aerial surveillance and additional intelligence,” the IDF said without disclosing what steps were taken.

-ABC News’ Dorit Long

Jul 06, 2024, 4:19 PM EDT
IDF admits it’ll be fighting Hamas insurgency in Gaza for 5 years

Israel is planning for a long insurgency against Hamas, saying it expects Hamas to still exist in five years, but it said the group is no longer capable of perpetrating an Oct. 7-style attack.

“Will you and me be talking five years from now about Hamas as a terror organization in Gaza The answer is yes,” Israel Defense Forces spokesman Daniel Hagari told ABC News.

Hagari is the first Israeli official to publicly admit that the insurgency will be long and difficult, in stark contrast to the bombast of Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who continues to vow the quick destruction of Hamas.

Gaza, and even to some degree Hezbollah, are “perpetual wars” distracting Israel from what he called their main enemy, Iran, a senior Israeli official told ABC News.

-ABC News’ Matt Gutman

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

Military pier off Gaza likely to cease operations in coming days: US officials

pawel.gaul/Getty Images

(WASHINGTON) — The U.S. military’s temporary pier will be reattached to a beach in Gaza on Wednesday and will likely be removed permanently a few days later, three U.S. officials told ABC News.

The $230 million pier system, known as Joint Logistics Over the Shore (JLOTS), had been authorized to remain operational in Gaza through July 31 and, despite U.S. officials openly discussing it remaining operational beyond that date, it now appears it will cease operation before even reaching the end of the month.

The three U.S. officials told ABC News the pier will be reattached to the beach just southwest of Gaza City on Wednesday and that after a few days of operations to transport humanitarian aid from Cyprus, the pier will likely be shut down for good. Cyprus was the gathering point for aid provided by international aid organizations to be vetted by Israeli security before its transport via JLOTS into Gaza.

The system’s deployment to Gaza was announced by President Joe Biden during his State of the Union speech earlier this year with the hope it would be a “maritime corridor” to help bring humanitarian aid into Gaza, especially as major land routes were closed by Israel, citing security concerns.

But rough seas interrupted the pier’s operations for lengthy stretches of time that have left it operational for only 23 of the 53 days since it was anchored on May 17.

The temporary structure, built to rise and fall with the waves, has had to be moved several times to the Israeli port of Ashdod due to rough seas — including once because portions of the pier broke and it had to be repaired.

The pier has been in Ashdod since June 28, when it was moved for the third time due to rough sea conditions.

Prior to its move away from the beach on June 28, the pier system had delivered more than 19.4 million pounds of humanitarian aid into Gaza, according to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM). But a very large portion of it had begun to gather at the staging area on the beach, since the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) had refused to pick up the aid.

Aid organizations have said one of the issues is that there’s no system to distribute the aid once it arrives. WFP had struck an agreement with the military to deliver the aid that arrives via the pier, as Biden has insisted that no U.S. troops deploy on shore in Gaza. But WFP temporarily suspended operations in June, pending a security review, and has not resumed operations.

On Tuesday, a Pentagon spokesman said that while the pier was in Ashdod, WFP had significantly reduced the amount of aid at the staging area and moved it to its warehouses in Gaza for distribution.

Any remaining humanitarian aid still at Cyprus will be delivered to Gaza in the coming days, after which its operations will likely end for good, according to the U.S. officials.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

Ukraine searches children’s hospital wreckage as NATO countries condemn ‘barbaric’ Russian strike

Emergency and rescue personnel operate and clear the rubble of the destroyed building of Ohmatdyt Children’s Hospital following a missile strike in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv on July 8, 2024. (Roman Pilipey/AFP via Getty Images)

(LONDON) — First responders spent the night in Kyiv digging through the rubble at the children’s hospital and other sites struck by Russian missiles on Monday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.

“The rescue operation after yesterday’s Russian missile attack continues,” he said on social media on Tuesday. “As of now, 38 people have been reported dead, including four children. My condolences to all the families and friends affected by this tragedy.”

At least 94 children, including eight who were injured, were transferred to other hospitals following the missile strike on the Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital in Kyiv, Mayor Vitali Klitschko said on the messaging app Telegram.

The wide-ranging aerial assault on Monday came on the eve of a NATO summit in Washington, D.C. As rescue work in Kyiv continued, officials with NATO countries and other Ukrainian allies issued scathing remarks criticizing Russia for its “horrendous” and “barbaric” strikes.

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg condemned Russia’s action, describing the strikes as “horrendous missile attacks against Ukrainian cities, killing innocent civilians including children.”

NATO members will make decisions during the Washington summit about how to strengthen the alliance’s support for Ukraine, according to a press release from Stoltenberg’s office.

President Joe Biden said on Monday that the fatal missile strikes in Ukraine were “a horrific reminder of Russia’s brutality.” He added that the world must continue to stand with Ukraine ahead of this week’s NATO summit, where the ongoing war will be a main topic of discussion.

Biden said that he will make clear to Zelenskyy that “support for Ukraine is unshakeable.” NATO leaders would also be announcing “new measures to strengthen Ukraine’s air defenses,” he said.

“My thoughts are with all the victims and their loved ones,” David Lammy, the U.K. foreign secretary, said in a statement. “The U.K.’s support to Ukraine is iron-clad. We must hold those responsible for Putin’s illegal war to account.”

Stéphane Séjourné, the French foreign minister, condemned Russia’s missile strikes, calling them “barbaric” and “war crimes.” He called for Ukrainian allies to strengthen their support for the under-seige nation.

“Russia must not win this war,” Séjourné said in French on social media.

The Security Service of Ukraine said it had opened a criminal investigation into the attack, which it also called a “war crime.” The service said a Russian Kh-101 missile struck the site, according to its preliminary findings.

Martin Jaeger, the German ambassador to Ukraine, said his team visited the hospital site and saw young cancer and dialysis patients “sitting on the sidewalk with their mothers.”

“This is a war against the civilian population,” he wrote in German on social media. “This is what Russia’s readiness for negotiations and its desire for peace looks like.”

The German prime minister added in a statement that his country “stands unwaveringly by the side of the Ukrainian people. Especially in these difficult times.”

More than 400 people were busy overnight on rescue operations at the Kyiv children’s hospital and elsewhere, Zelenskyy said on Tuesday.

He said four of the 38 people killed had been children. At least 190 people were being treated for injuries across the country, he said.

“We continue our work to increase the protection of our cities and communities from Russian terror,” Zelenskyy said. “There will be decisions. The world has the necessary strength for this.”

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

Israel-Gaza live updates: IDF attacking in Khan Younis, Gaza City and Rafah

Tents sheltering displaced Palestinians in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip are pictured on June 4, 2024 amid the ongoing conflict in the Palestinian territory between Israel and Hamas. (Photo by EYAD BABA/AFP via Getty Images)

(NEW YORK) — As the Israel-Hamas war continues, efforts to secure the release of hostages taken by the terrorist organization are ongoing, and Israeli forces have launched an assault in Khan Younis in southern Gaza.

Here is how the news is developing:

Jul 08, 2024, 7:50 PM EDT
More flexibility from Hamas in cease-fire and hostage talks: US officials

With CIA Director Bill Burns and White House Middle East adviser Brett McGurk working to advance a cease-fire and hostage release deal in the Middle East, two U.S. officials familiar with the negotiations said they see more flexibility from Hamas than they did previously.

The officials assessed this is coming from Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar; however, they stopped short of saying they felt a breakthrough was in the offing.

The officials also said they believe Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is still committed to achieving a deal.

The American delegation headed by Burns arrived in Cairo earlier Monday to continue Gaza cease-fire talks, Egyptian state TV reported.

Jul 08, 2024, 6:30 PM EDT
Latest Gaza evacuation order will affect life-saving care: WHO

A new evacuation order in Gaza will “further impede delivery of very limited life-saving care,” the World Health Organization said Monday.

The Israel Defense Forces issued an evacuation order in Gaza City on Monday, telling people to go to designated safe zones.

Al-Ahli and Patients’ Friendly hospitals are now “out of service,” with some patients referred to hospitals that are experiencing shortages of beds and medical supplies, according to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. Multiple health care centers are also located within the evacuation zone, while three hospitals are close by, he said.

“These key hospitals and medical facilities could quickly become non-functional due to hostilities in their vicinity or obstruction to access,” he said in a statement.

The IDF said Monday it launched a “counterterrorism operation in Gaza City targeting Hamas and Islamic Jihad infrastructure.”

“Civilians were warned and a route was opened for their safe evacuation,” the IDF said.

Jul 08, 2024, 1:34 PM EDT
Israel says it’s killed another Hezbollah leader in Lebanon

Israeli forces claimed Monday they have killed another Hezbollah leader in southern Lebanon.

An Israel Defense Forces aircraft “struck and eliminated the Hezbollah terrorist Mustafa Hassan Salman in the area of Qlaileh,” the military said in a statement.

The IDF accused Salman of participating in the “planning and execution of numerous terror attacks” against Israel.

Last week, the IDF said it assassinated Muhammad Ni’Mah Nasser, one of the most senior Hezbollah commanders killed since the group began firing at Israel in solidarity with Gaza on Oct. 8.

Attacks between Israel and Hezbollah forces continued Monday.

Jul 08, 2024, 1:19 PM EDT
Hostages and Missing Families Forum asks Netanyahu to delay US trip

The Hostages and Missing Families Forum has asked Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to delay his trip to the United States at the end of the month and stay in Israel to “prioritize finalizing a hostage release deal.”

Netanyahu is currently scheduled to address a joint session of the U.S. Congress on July 24.

“For 9 months, 120 innocent men, women, children, and elderly have been held captive in Gaza by Hamas,” the Hostages Families Forum said in a statement on Monday. “These hostages endure unimaginable horrors daily. Every moment in captivity is a risk to their lives and well-being.”

Jul 08, 2024, 12:31 PM EDT
Israeli forces attacking in Khan Younis, Gaza City and Rafah

Israeli forces have been attacking in Rafah, Khan Younis and Gaza City, the Israel Defense Forces said Monday.

Over the past day in Rafah, Israeli troops “operated to eliminate more than 30 terrorists who posed a threat to IDF troops,” IDF said in a statement.

Jul 07, 2024, 5:07 PM EDT
American hurt by Hezbollah rocket fire: US Embassy

A U.S. citizen was injured Sunday by one of multiple rockets fired into Israel from Lebanon by the terrorist group Hezbollah, according to the U.S. embassy in Israel.

Embassy officials said they received information regarding the injured private U.S. citizen. The embassy confirmed the individual does not work for the U.S. government.

The embassy was working to gather more information on the injured person, officials said.

Further details about the incident were not immediately disclosed.

-ABC News’ Jordana Miller

Jul 06, 2024, 6:26 PM EDT
IDF gives more details on strike on school

Israel Defense Forces released details about a strike on a school in Nuseirat refugee camp that Gaza officials said killed 16 and wounded at least 50.

The IDF claimed its intelligence found that the site allegedly “served as a hideout and operational infrastructure from which attacks against IDF troops operating in the Gaza Strip were directed and carried out.”

“Prior to the strike, numerous steps were taken in order to mitigate the risk of harming civilians, including the use of precise aerial surveillance and additional intelligence,” the IDF said without disclosing what steps were taken.

-ABC News’ Dorit Long

Jul 06, 2024, 4:19 PM EDT
IDF admits it’ll be fighting Hamas insurgency in Gaza for 5 years

Israel is planning for a long insurgency against Hamas, saying it expects Hamas to still exist in five years, but it said the group is no longer capable of perpetrating an Oct. 7-style attack.

“Will you and me be talking five years from now about Hamas as a terror organization in Gaza The answer is yes,” Israel Defense Forces spokesman Daniel Hagari told ABC News.

Hagari is the first Israeli official to publicly admit that the insurgency will be long and difficult, in stark contrast to the bombast of Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who continues to vow the quick destruction of Hamas.

Gaza, and even to some degree Hezbollah, are “perpetual wars” distracting Israel from what he called their main enemy, Iran, a senior Israeli official told ABC News.

-ABC News’ Matt Gutman

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

‘Massive’ barrage of Russian missiles target Ukraine, killing 37 and striking children’s hospital

A Ukrainian firefighter works to extinguish a fire in a residential building following a missile attack in Kyiv on July 8, 2024. — Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images

(LONDON) — At least 37 people were killed — including three children — and 170 people were injured across Ukraine on Monday, as Russia launched a barrage of more than 40 missiles, according to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

At least five cities fell under attack, including the capital of Kyiv, where 21 people were killed. Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital in Kyiv — one of the most well-respected children’s hospitals in the country — was damaged along with nearly 100 other facilities including residential homes, kindergartens, a maternity hospital, a college and a business center, according to Zelenskyy.

At least two people were killed in the attack on the hospital, including one female physician. At least seven children were injured, according to officials. Zelenskyy said Monday that doctors, hospital staff and first responders were digging through the debris.

“The entire world must use all its determination to finally put an end to the Russian strikes. Killing is what Putin brings,” Zelenskyy said. “Only together can we bring real peace and security.”

Ukrainian Minister of Defense Rustem Umerov wrote in a post on Facebook that the Russian attack was “massive” and was carried out “at the peak hour when Ukrainians went to work.”

Kyiv city authorities declared July 9 a day of mourning in the capital after the attack, according to a post on Telegram. Meanwhile, Ohmatdyt Children’s Hospital asked for donations to help rebuild the hospital after the attack, and raised more than $2 million in just three hours on Monday, according to UNITED24, a fundraising initiative of the president of Ukraine.

The attack, which is among the largest Russian strikes in months, comes a day before U.S. President Joe Biden begins a three-day NATO summit in Washington, where the group is expected to discuss support for Ukraine.

The alliance is expected to make “significant” announcements about increased military and financial support for Ukraine, a senior White House official said last week.

Photos and videos shared by Zelenskyy and those at the hospital appeared to show bloodied doctors carrying out children, a building in the hospital grounds reduced to rubble and the exterior of the main building blown out. One image appears to show young patients sitting on the street with their IVs after the explosion.

A doctor at the hospital told local media the missile destroyed a building where two operations were happening at the time.

The Security Service of Ukraine said in a statement that it had opened a criminal investigation into the strike on the hospital, which it called a “war crime.” The service said a Russian Kh-101 missile struck the building, according to its preliminary findings.

At the top of a meeting with U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin Monday morning at the Pentagon, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg condemned the recent Russian strikes on Ukraine.

“In Ukraine, Russia continues its brutal war,” Stoltenberg said. “Only today we have seen horrendous missile attacks against Ukrainian cities, killing innocent civilians, including children. I condemn these hideous attacks.”

The missiles targeted cities including Kyiv, Dnipro, Kryvyi Rih, Slovyansk and Kramatorsk, Zelesnkyy said. At least eight of the dead were in Kyiv, officials said.

At least 10 people were killed and several others injured Monday morning in Russian airstrikes on Kryvyi Rih, a city in central Ukraine and Zelenskyy’s hometown, officials said. Another three people were killed in Russian airstrikes on the eastern Ukrainian city of Pokrovsk, officials said.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

‘Massive’ barrage of Russian missiles target Ukraine, killing 21 and striking children’s hospital

A Ukrainian firefighter works to extinguish a fire in a residential building following a missile attack in Kyiv on July 8, 2024. — Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images

(LONDON) — At least 21 people were killed across Ukraine early on Monday, as Russia launched a barrage of more than 40 missiles in a “massive” attack, Ukrainian officials said.

Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital in Kyiv was damaged, along with residential areas and other infrastructure, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on social media.

It was not immediately clear whether there were casualties at the hospital, but children were believed to be stuck beneath the rubble, Zelenskyy said. Doctors, hospital staff and first responders were digging through the debris, he said. The hospital is among the most well respected children’s hospitals in Ukraine.

“And the entire world must use all its determination to finally put an end to the Russian strikes. Killing is what Putin brings,” Zelenskyy said. “Only together can we bring real peace and security.”

The attack, which is among the largest Russian strikes in months, comes a day before U.S. President Joe Biden begins a 3-day NATO summit in Washington, where the group is expected to discuss support for Ukraine.

The alliance is expected to make “significant” announcements about increased military and financial support for Ukraine, a senior White House official said last week.

Photos and videos shared Monday by Zelenskyy and those at the hospital appeared to show bloodied doctors carrying out children, a building in the hospital grounds reduced to rubble and the exterior of the main building blown out. One image appears to show young patients sitting on the street with their IVs after the explosion.

A doctor at the hospital told local media the missile destroyed a building where two operations were happening at the time.

The missiles targeted cities including Kyiv, Dnipro, Kryvyi Rih, Slovyansk and Kramatorsk, Zelesnkyy said. At least eight of the dead were in Kyiv, officials said.

At least 10 people were killed and several others injured Monday morning in Russian airstrikes on Kryvyi Rih, a city in central Ukraine and Zelenskyy’s hometown, officials said. Another three people were killed in Russian airstrikes on the eastern Ukrainian city of Pokrovsk, officials said.

ABC News’ Joe Simonetti and Morgan Winsor contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

Hurricane Beryl live updates: Storm makes landfall in Texas as Category 1 hurricane

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

(NEW YORK) — Hurricane Beryl strengthened to a Category 1 hurricane before making landfall along the Gulf Coast of Texas early Monday morning.

The earliest Category 5 Atlantic hurricane in history, the storm killed at least seven people in the Windward Islands before skirting south of Jamaica, shutting down communications, stranding tourists and delivering storm surge and flooding rain to the island.

Here’s how the news is developing. All times Eastern:

Jul 08, 6:07 AM
Almost 200,000 without power in Texas, PowerOutage.us says

More than 199,000 customers were without power across Texas early Monday, about an hour after Hurricane Beryl made landfall, according to PowerOutage.us.

Many of those outages were along the Gulf Coast, where the Category 1 hurricane made landfall, according to the tracking website.

About 21,000 customers were without power in Brazoria County, about 12,000 were without power in Matagorda County and about 5,000 were without power in Galveston County, the site said.

-ABC News’ Amanda M. Morris and Kevin Shalvey

Jul 08, 5:07 AM
Beryl makes landfall in Texas

Hurricane Beryl made landfall at about 4 a.m. on Monday near Matagorda, Texas, the National Hurricane Center said.

The hurricane brought with it a “dangerous” storm surge and strong winds, officials said. Flash flooding was expected.

-ABC News’ Max Golembo

Jul 08, 2:40 AM
Beryl expected to move inland over Texas, Arkansas

As Beryl heads toward the Gulf Coast as a Category 1 hurricane, the storm is forecast to make landfall in the next few hours before turning northeastward.

The storm’s expected to move farther inland over eastern Texas and Arkansas late Monday and Tuesday.

If Beryl makes landfall as a Category 1 storm, it would be the first landfalling hurricane in the lower 48 states since Hurricane Idalia made landfall on Keaton Beach, Florida, on Aug. 30 2023 as a Category 3 hurricane.

-ABC News’ Richard Von Ohlen

Jul 08, 2:26 AM
Winds increase to 80 mph

Hurricane Beryl’s top sustained winds increased to 80 mph, as the storm moved toward the Texas coast.

The Category 1 hurricane was about 30 miles south-southwest of Matagorda at about 1 a.m. local time. It was about 95 miles from Corpus Christi.

The storm was moving north-northwest at about 10 mph, with a turn toward the north expected this morning.

Beryl’s center is expected during the next several hours to make landfall on the middle Texas coast.

-ABC News’ Richard Von Ohlen

Jul 08, 1:54 AM
Rainbands move onto Texas coast

As Hurricane Beryl continued toward the Texas coast, radar indicated the heaviest rainbands along the eyewall have moved onto land.

The Category 1 hurricane had top sustained winds of about 75 mph just after midnight local time.

-ABC News’ Richard Von Ohlen

Jul 08, 12:39 AM
Beryl becomes a hurricane again as it heads toward Texas

Beryl has become a Category 1 hurricane as it heads toward Texas, the National Hurricane Center announced just after midnight ET on Monday.

Hurricane Beryl’s maximum sustained winds have increased to 75 mph. The storm is expected to strengthen before it makes landfall on the Texas coast.

Currently, Beryl is about 65 miles from Matagorda, Texas and 105 miles from Corpus Christi.

Jul 07, 11:08 PM
Beryl expected to become hurricane before reaching landfall overnight

Beryl remains a tropical storm with winds of 70 mph as of Sunday evening. However, the storm is expected to become a hurricane again before making landfall.

Currently Beryl is about 75 miles from Matagorda, Texas.

The storm is expected near Matagorda between 3 and 5 a.m. local time.

Jul 07, 8:10 PM
Beryl’s winds reach 70 mph as it heads toward Texas coast

As Texans brace for hurricane conditions, officials said Beryl currently has 70 mph winds as it moves toward the coast.

By Sunday evening, the tropical storm was located 105 miles southeast of Matagorda, Texas, moving northwest at a rate of 12 mph.

Jul 07, 8:10 PM
Officials urge Texans on the coast to evacuate

In a press conference Sunday, Texas Lt. Gov Dan Patrick urged people living on the state’s coast to evacuate before the storm hits.

“We don’t see many people leaving,” Patrick said. “You don’t want to be on the road tomorrow.”

Texas Division of Emergency Management officials said over 50 ambulances are on standby to assist with evacuating hospitals, nursing homes and assisted living facilities, if needed.

“This storm has already left nine deaths in its path through the Caribbean. We don’t want number 10 to be in Texas,” Patrick said.

Jul 07, 9:01 PM
Beryl is closing in on Texas with up to 7 feet of storm surge forecast

The combination of storm surge and tide will cause normally dry areas near the Texas coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

Officials are forecasting up to 7 feet of storm surge, above normal tide levels for Matagorda Bay and Port O’Connor to San Luis Pass.

The possible storm surge is forecast to reach up to 6 feet in Galveston Bay, officials said.

Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle, and can vary greatly over short distances, according to the NHC.

Jul 07, 1:40 PM
Houston school campuses close as Beryl approaches

The Houston Independent School District announced Sunday that all its campuses will be closed as tropical storm Beryl bears down on the Texas coast and is expected to be a Category 1 hurricane when it makes landfall.

The school district sent out a message Sunday to students, staff and parents that it is canceling summer classes and activities, and closing all campuses and buildings on Monday and Tuesday.

Beryl was a tropical storm on Sunday in the Gulf of Mexico, but is expected to strengthen overnight and make landfall on the Texas Gulf Coast as a Category 1 hurricane early Monday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center.

-ABC News’ Gina Sunseri

Jul 07, 12:37 PM
Beryl could be a Category 1 hurricane when it slams Texas: NHC

Beryl remains a tropical storm but was gaining strength over open warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and is forecast to be a Category 1 hurricane by Sunday night and is expected to make landfall on the Texas coast early Monday, according to the National Hurricane Center.

In an update on Beryl’s path issued at 10 a.m. CT, the hurricane center said winds generated by Beryl had slightly increased to 65 mph.

“Beryl [is] becoming better organized and forecast to become a hurricane before landfall,” the hurricane center said in its latest update.

The storm is expected to make landfall on the middle Texas Coast near Matagorda Bay on Monday.

A Hurricane Warning has been issued for the Gulf Coast from Baffin Bay north to San Luis Pass. A Storm Surge Warning was also issued for the coast of Texas from High Island to Sabine Pass.

“Beryl is forecast to become a hurricane again later today. Continued strengthening is expected overnight before Beryl reaches the Texas coast,” according to the hurricane center’s statement.

The hurricane center warned that a few tornadoes could also occur along the middle and upper Texas Coast through Sunday night and across eastern Texas and western
Louisiana on Monday.

In addition to storm surges of up to 6 feet, Beryl is expected to dump heavy rain on the Texas coastal cities.

“Heavy rainfall of 5 to 10 inches with localized amounts of 15 inches is expected across portions of the middle and upper Texas Gulf Coast and eastern Texas beginning today through Monday night,” the hurricane center said.

The White House said Sunday that President Joe Biden is monitoring Beryl as FEMA prepositions response teams.

“The President and his team continue to monitor Tropical Storm Beryl as it makes its way towards South Texas,” a White House official said. “We are in close contact with our state and local counterparts and FEMA has prepositioned response personnel, search and rescue teams, bottled water, meals, tarps and electric generators in case they are needed. On Sunday, FEMA activated its National Response Coordination Center (NRCC) to further support local response efforts.”

-ABC News’ Daniel Amarante

Jul 07, 6:20 AM
Beryl to make landfall as hurricane Monday morning in Texas

Beryl remained early Sunday a tropical storm with winds of 60 mph.

The storm has been slow to strengthen over the past several hours, which is potentially good news for the residents of the Texas coast.

Even though strengthening is expected, each hour that this storm delays that intensification will help contribute to a weaker storm upon landfall.

A hurricane warning is in effect from Baffin Bay to San Luis Pass.

A storm surge warning is in effect for Corpus Christi Bay, Matagorda Bay, and Galveston Bay. During the peak of the storm on Monday morning, surge may reach 4 to 6 feet above normal tide in Mesquite Bay and Matagorda Bay.

There are also numerous other hurricane watches, tropical storm watches and warnings, and storm surge watches across the Texas coast.

Beryl is still forecast to make landfall near Matagorda Bay as a Category 1 Hurricane on Monday morning.

-ABC News’ Daniel Amarante

Jul 06, 10:25 PM
Galveston issues voluntary evacuation notice

An island city on the Gulf Coast of Texas issued a voluntary evacuation of the island’s west end, Galveston officials said in a press release on Saturday.

While officials feel the chances of tides above five feet are currently very low, tides above that level could prevent travel on major roads and make it difficult for the city to respond to emergencies, the press release said.

Brian Maxwell, Galveston city manager, noted that predictions for the track of Beryl have not changed.

The size of Beryl has expanded slightly, according to the National Weather Service, and as a result, the island’s west end is currently under a storm surge warning.

Mayor Craig Brown “signed the order out of an abundance of caution,” said Maxwell.

If residents choose to stay in a low-lying area, they may not be able to safely leave for several hours, and emergency services may not be available while tides remain elevated, emergency management officials said.

Jul 06, 5:09 PM
Beryl now less than 400 miles from Corpus Christi

Beryl, now less than 400 miles from Corpus Christi, remains a tropical storm with winds of 60 mph, moving at 13 mph.

Beryl is moving over water that is slightly warmer than normal, by 1 to 2 degrees.

As Beryl approaches the Texas coast it will move over much warmer waters, 4 and 5 degrees above normal. The warmer water is expected to help boost Beryl back into a hurricane before making landfall northeast of Corpus Christi on Monday morning.

Hurricane Warnings have been issued for parts of Texas, from Baffin Bay northward to Sargent. Tropical Storm Warnings are now issued north of Sargent to High Island.

Landfall may occur with the center of circulation most likely northeast of Corpus Christi — the greatest impacts remaining north of that city as well. There is still time for this track to change over the next 24 hours.

The last hurricane to make landfall in Texas was Nicholas in September 2021, which was a Category 1 and made landfall on the northern side of East Matagorda Bay.

The last hurricane to make landfall just north of Corpus Christi was Harvey in 2017 as a Category 4. Harvey then stalled and dumped historic rainfall over southeast Texas. Beryl is not expected to stall and therefore similar impacts as Harvey are not expected, in terms of rainfall, wind or storm surge.

A Hurricane Watch has been issued for the entire coast south of San Luis Pass due to the hurricane-strength, over 74 mph sustained wind expected along the Texas coast.

Jul 06, 12:33 PM
Hurricane watch in effect for parts of Texas

A Hurricane Watch is in effect in Texas from the Rio Grande Valley to San Luis Pass, just west of Galveston Island, with a Storm Surge Watch from the mouth of the Rio Grande northward to High Island, Texas.

Storm surge is forecast to be 3 to 5 feet in Corpus Christi and Matagorda Bay, and 2 to 4 feet in Galveston Bay. These numbers are subject to change depending on the exact track and intensity of the storm as it approaches landfall.

Residents along the Texas coast need to be prepared for a powerful hurricane with life-threatening storm surge, damaging winds, and significant flooding.

Flooding rain is often the most impactful aspect of tropical systems. In terms of rainfall amounts, much of southeastern Texas is looking at 5 to 10 inches, with locally higher amounts up to 15 inches. Most of this rain will fall on Monday and Tuesday.

Jul 06, 12:27 PM
Now a tropical storm, Beryl expected to strengthen before hitting Texas

Beryl remains a tropical storm with winds of 60 mph as it churns in the Gulf of Mexico as of Saturday morning, but it is expected to strengthen before hitting Texas on Sunday with potential Category 1 strength.

On Saturday, Beryl may take some time to recover, but is forecast to begin strengthening by the end of the day. The storm is moving into favorable conditions for hurricanes, with warm water and limited wind shear.

The track from the National Hurricane Center takes Beryl towards the Texas coast by late Sunday night into early Monday, likely as a strong Category 1 Hurricane.

Currently, the most likely landfall location is around Matagorda Island, just east of Corpus Christi, but that will likely need to be adjusted as the storm’s track becomes more “fine-tuned” in the next day or so.

Copyright © 2024, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

World news

Israel-Gaza live updates: US Embassy says American injured by Hezbollah rocket fire

Tents sheltering displaced Palestinians in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip are pictured on June 4, 2024 amid the ongoing conflict in the Palestinian territory between Israel and Hamas. (Photo by EYAD BABA/AFP via Getty Images)

(NEW YORK) — As the Israel-Hamas war continues, negotiations have stalled to secure the release of hostages taken by the terrorist organization, and Israeli forces continue to launch incursions in the southern Gazan town of Rafah ahead of a possible large-scale invasion.

Here’s how the news is developing. All times Eastern:

Jul 07, 5:07 PM
American hurt by Hezbollah rocket fire: US Embassy

A U.S. citizen was injured Sunday by one of multiple rockets fired into Israel from Lebanon by the terrorist group Hezbollah, according to the U.S. embassy in Israel.

Embassy officials said they received information regarding the injured private U.S. citizen. The embassy confirmed the individual does not work for the U.S. government.

The embassy was working to gather more information on the injured person, officials said.

Further details about the incident were not immediately disclosed.

-ABC News’ Jordana Miller

Jul 06, 6:26 PM
IDF gives more details on strike on school

Israel Defense Forces released details about a strike on a school in Nuseirat refugee camp that Gaza officials said killed 16 and wounded at least 50.

The IDF claimed its intelligence found that the site allegedly “served as a hideout and operational infrastructure from which attacks against IDF troops operating in the Gaza Strip were directed and carried out.”

“Prior to the strike, numerous steps were taken in order to mitigate the risk of harming civilians, including the use of precise aerial surveillance and additional intelligence,” the IDF said without disclosing what steps were taken.

-ABC News’ Dorit Long

Jul 06, 4:19 PM
IDF admits it’ll be fighting Hamas insurgency in Gaza for 5 years

Israel is planning for a long insurgency against Hamas, saying it expects Hamas to still exist in five years, but it said the group is no longer capable of perpetrating an Oct. 7-style attack.

“Will you and me be talking five years from now about Hamas as a terror organization in Gaza The answer is yes,” Israel Defense Forces spokesman Daniel Hagari told ABC News.

Hagari is the first Israeli official to publicly admit that the insurgency will be long and difficult, in stark contrast to the bombast of Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who continues to vow the quick destruction of Hamas.

Gaza, and even to some degree Hezbollah, are “perpetual wars” distracting Israel from what he called their main enemy, Iran, a senior Israeli official told ABC News.

-ABC News’ Matt Gutman

Jul 06, 4:21 PM EDT
16 killed in strike on Gaza school, police unit

Sixteen people were killed and 50 others injured in a strike on a school in Nuseirat refugee camp, in central Gaza, according to the Gaza Ministry of Health. The school housed displaced people and had a mobile police unit inside it.

Israel has not yet commented on the strike, ABC News has asked the IDF for comment.

-ABC News’ Victoria Beaule

Jul 06, 10:40 AM EDT
Israel conducts strikes in Lebanon overnight

The Israel Defence Forces said on Saturday that it struck “a number” of Hezbollah targets in southern Lebanon. Hezbollah responded with an aerial attack on what they said was a military position in the north on Saturday morning.

The IDF said the drone was intercepted and the remnants fell in an open area.

Jul 04, 2:37 PM EDT
Netanyahu visits Air Force following strikes from Lebanon

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited the operational headquarters of the Air Force Thursday following strikes from Hezbollah militants in Lebanon.

“In the midst of the difficult campaign against Lebanon, we established a principle — whoever hurts us will bleed on his head,” Netanyahu told the soldiers. “We put it into practice. We know the road is still long, but we are determined to restore security to the north and return the residents safely to their homes.”

Hezbollah militants said they fired more than 200 rockets toward Israel earlier Thursday. Fires broke out in several areas of northern Israel due to UAVs and shrapnel from interceptions of the projectiles falling in the area, the Israel Defense Forces said. No one was seriously injured.

One person was killed in Houla in Marjayoun after an Israeli drone attacked a house, the Lebanese national news agency NNA reported.

-ABC News’ Ghazi Balkiz and Jordana Miller

Jul, 04 1:15 PM EDT
Biden and Harris speak with Netanyahu: White House

President Joe Biden spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday, a White House official said.

Vice President Kamala Harris also joined the call, which wrapped early Thursday afternoon, the official said.

Even as Biden tries to stave off criticism for his debate performance in the U.S., he is also trying to tamp down the mounting conflict between Israel and Hezbollah on the border with Lebanon. Hundreds of rockets were fired into northern Israel on Thursday, though no one was injured.

Netanyahu’s office also announced Thursday that Israel had received Hamas’ latest cease-fire proposal from U.S., Qatari and Egyptian mediators, and was “examining” the proposal.

-ABC News’ Molly Nagle

Jul 04, 6:01 AM EDT
Hezbollah fires 200 rockets, drones toward Israel

Hezbollah militants said they fired more than 200 rockets and drones toward Israel on Thursday.

Sirens and alerts began sounding throughout northern Israel early on Thursday, officials said.

As the sirens began “numerous projectiles and suspicious aerial targets crossed from Lebanon into Israeli territory,” the Israel Defense Forces said.

Jul 03, 1:44 PM
Israel assassinates highest ranking Hezbollah commander since Oct. 8

Israel assassinated the commander of Hezbollah’s Aziz Unit, based in southern Lebanon, Israel claimed and Hezbollah acknowledged.

Muhammad Ni’Mah Nasser is one of the most senior commanders killed since Hezbollah began firing at Israel in solidarity with Gaza on Oct. 8.

Hezbollah has responded with around 100 rockets in the last three hours, according to the IDF. No major damage has been reported.

Both sides have said they are ready for war and that they are ready to ink a peace deal brokered by U.S. envoy Amos Hochstein. A senior Hezbollah official said this week it can only sign the deal after Israel reaches a cease-fire with Hamas in Gaza.

-ABC News’ Matt Gutman

Jul 02, 4:34 PM
European Gaza Hospital now empty following evacuation orders: WHO

All patients and medical staff have left European Gaza Hospital in southern Gaza, following evacuation orders from the Israel Defense Forces in Khan Younis, the World Health Organization said Tuesday.

The hospital, which had 320 patients, is “now completely empty,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.

“It is devastating to see the 650-bed-capacity hospital out of service at a time when access to health care is urgently needed,” he said in a statement while calling on the hospital to be made operational “immediately.”

Most patients were being referred to Nasser Medical Complex, which is now at full capacity and facing a shortage of medical supplies, the WHO said.

Jul 02, 4:16 PM
Evacuation order is largest in Gaza since October: UN

The Israel Defense Forces’ evacuation order for a region in southern Gaza on Monday was the largest such order since October 2023, according to the United Nations.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East estimated that 250,000 people are impacted by the evacuation order in Khan Younis. The evacuation zone covers 117 square kilometers, according to U.N. spokesperson Stephane Dujarric.

Jul 01, 1:12 PM
IDF orders evacuation of area in Khan Younis amid response to rocket attack

The Israel Defense Forces ordered hundreds of people in Khan Younis in southern Gaza to evacuate amid its response to a rocket attack, the military said.

The area for evacuation is near the European Hospital, according to a leaflet distributed in the region Monday.

“For your safety, you must evacuate immediately to the humanitarian zone,” the leaflet stated.

The IDF said the evacuation is in response to an earlier rocket attack that came from the area involving approximately 20 projectiles.

“A number of the projectiles were intercepted and some of the projectiles fell inside southern Israel. No injuries were reported,” the IDF said in a statement. “IDF Artillery is currently striking the sources of the fire.”

-ABC News’ Sami Zyara and Matt Gutman

Jun 29, 3:44 PM
Hostage speaks 1st time since release

Noa Argamani, one of four hostages rescued during a deadly IDF raid on June 8, released a video thanking Israeli forces for rescuing her and calls for the release of the remaining hostages, including her boyfriend, in her first public remarks since she was released.

They were separated during the kidnapping, according to Argamani.

“I want to take this opportunity to remind everyone that there are still 120 hostages in Hamas captivity. Among them is Avinatan Or, my partner, from whom I was separated at the moment of abduction. Although I’m home now, we can’t forget about the hostages who are still in Hamas captivity, and we must do everything possible to bring them back home,” Argamani said.

-ABC News’ Victoria Beaule

Jun 28, 2:31 PM
Military pier in Gaza to be taken offline again: US official

The U.S. military pier in Gaza will be taken offline again on Friday and moved to the Israeli port of Ashdod due to high seas, according to a U.S. official.

This is a precautionary move to protect the pier from breaking due to rough waves, the official said.

This is the third time the pier has had to be moved to Ashdod because of weather. The pier has been operational only about half of the time since it opened in mid-May.

“I don’t have a date of when the pier would be reinstalled,” Defense Department deputy spokesperson Sabrina Singh told reporters Friday, noting that Centcom will assess the sea conditions over the weekend.

As the pier was moved away Friday, two U.S. officials told ABC News that officials are considering not re-installing the pier until the humanitarian aid that it brought to Gaza gets distributed. More than 19 million pounds of aid has been delivered to Gaza via the pier but it’s now piling up at the staging point at the edge of the pier, Singh said.

Inspectors General at the Pentagon and the U.S. Agency for International Development announced Thursday that they’re launching reviews of the mission to deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza via the military’s temporary pier system.

-ABC News’ Anne Flaherty and Luis Martinez

Jun 28, 11:31 AM
Israel, US discussing transfer of Patriot air defense batteries to Ukraine

Israel and the U.S. are discussing the transfer of Patriot air defense batteries to Ukraine, a source familiar with the matter told ABC News.

This agreement — not yet finalized, according to the source — would mark a shift in Israel’s public policy following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

A key factor behind Israel’s willingness to discuss the transfer of Patriot air defense batteries is the tightening military alliance between Russia and Iran.

In April, Israel announced the decommissioning of U.S.-donated Patriot systems from its aerial defense array. Security sources previously said Patriot has been successfully replaced by the Israeli-made David’s Sling air and missile defense system.

-ABC News’ Dana Savir

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