Latest Updates on Israel, Palestinian Conflict: Israel Confirms 3 Rockets Fired from Lebanon

Live Updates

As the conflict between Israel and Palestinians stretches into the fourth day of exchanging rocket fire, the death toll on both sides has continued to climb.

An Associated Press report indicated that 87 Palestinians, including 18 children, and 20 Islamic Jihad and Hamas militants, including a senior commander, have been killed so far by Israeli airstrikes. More than 530 people have been wounded, according to the Gaza Health Minstry. For Israel, seven deaths have been announced, including a six-year-old.

The Israel Defense Forces said they have stopped four anti-tank missile attacks and taken out a Hamas military intelligence office in Gaza, as officials prepare for a possible ground invasion.

Several world leaders have called for an end to the violence between Israel and Gaza.

"I think it's important that we break that cycle and we end this idea of reprisals, and I think that what everybody wants to see is urgent, urgent de-escalation," British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told reporters Thursday.

Meanwhile, France is preparing its police force to break up pro-Palestine protests scheduled in Paris this weekend.

Neither Israeli nor Hamas forces show any sign of relenting.

"It will take more time, but with great firmness ... we will achieve our goal — to restore peace to the State of Israel," Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said while visited the nation's missile defense system.

In a video message, a Hamas spokesman said "the decision to bomb Tel Aviv, Dimona and Jerusalem is easier for us than drinking water."

"Our conflict will reach you whenever you turn any aggression against our people," the spokesman added.

Other developments:
• Both Lebanon security forces and the Israel Defense Force confirmed late Thursday that three rockets were launched from Lebanon toward Israel. The rockets went into the Mediterranean Sea, IDF said, and it was unclear who launched them.

• The IDF is calling up 9,000 reserve troops as airstrikes against Hamas and other Gaza militants continue. Israeli forces plan to assemble near the Gaza border and be ready "for this option for mobilization at any given moment," the military's chief spokesman Brig. Gen. Hidai Zilberman told Israeli public television.

• Hamas leaders urged Palestinian Muslims to celebrate Eid al-Fitr inside their homes or nearest mosques as the violence continues.

• U.S. President Joe Biden said he has not seen a "significant overreaction" from Israel amid rocket launches from Gaza, though he called for de-escalation from both sides. Those comments, issued Thursday afternoon, echoed statements from other world leaders. Biden said he plans to engage some of them in a call soon.

Lebanon Palestine Israel Protest
Palestinian refugees and Lebanese men set a makeshift Israeli flag on fire in the southern Lebanese city of Sidon, in support of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, on May 12, 2021. Military officials confirmed that three rockets were launched into Israel from Lebanon Thursday. Mahmoud ZAYYAT/AFP via Getty Images

More Reporting on Rocket Fire from Lebanon

Newsweek's Tom O'Connor has more reporting on the three rockets fired from Lebanon.

"A short while ago, three rockets were fired from Lebanon into the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of the Galilee," the IDF said in a statement shared with Newsweek. "According to protocol, no sirens were sounded."

Asked about the strikes shortly after their announcement, a Hezbollah spokesperson said there was no comment yet available.

Lebanese security forces say that at least three rockets have been fired from south Lebanon toward Israel.

The Israel Defense Force confirmed the launch, and stated the rockets landed in the Mediterranean Sea of the coast of northern Israel.

BREAKING: A short while ago, three rockets were fired from Lebanon into the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of northern Israel.

— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 13, 2021

It is unclear who fired the rockets from Lebanon. In a statement Wednesday, Hezbollah told Newsweek they supported the efforts of Hamas and Islamic Jihad but were not yet planning to enter the fray.

"Of course, we are supporters," a Hezbollah spokesperson said. "But I don't think they're in need of our people. The numbers are available. All the rockets and capabilities are in the hands of the resistance fighters in Palestine."

Palestinian witnesses in the Gaza Strip said Israel has begun firing artillery and tank shells into Gaza Thursday, the Associated Press reports.

This marks a significant escalation in Israel's offensive in Gaza. A spokesman for the Israeli military told AP that forces were converging on the border with the Gaza Strip and "preparing the option of a ground maneuver" earlier Thursday.

The attacks sent families fleeing their homes. Gaza resident Ibrahim Jamal told AP that about 200 people have sought shelter in a United Nations school.

U.S. President Joe Biden joins other world leaders in the call for the de-escalation of violence on the Gaza Strip.

Biden told reporters at the White House Thursday that he expects to speak with more leaders in the region and added that he has not seen "a significant overreaction" of Israel's offensive in Gaza.

"The question is... how they get to a point where there is a significant reduction in the attacks, particularly the rocket attacks, that are indiscriminately fired into population centers," Biden said.

After a phone call with Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Wednesday, Biden defended Israel's right to self-defense and condemned the rocket attacks from Hamas.

"Israel has the right to defend itself when you have thousands of rockets flying into your territory," Biden told reporters. "My hope is that we'll see this coming to a conclusion sooner than later."

Biden Israel
U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the Colonial Pipeline incident in the Roosevelt Room of the White House May 13, 2021 in Washington, DC. President Biden said his administration doesn’t believe the Russian government was behind the pipeline attack and the fuel shortages should end by this weekend or next week. Biden also recently defended Israel's defensive military actions, saying as not seen a "significant overreaction" of Israel's offensive in Gaza. T.J. Kirkpatrick/Getty Images

Israel's defense minister approved the call-up of 9,000 more reservist troops amid airstrike battle with Hamas, the Associated Press reports.

An Israeli military spokesman told the AP that forces were assembling on the border with the Gaza Strip, a move that signals a possible escalation to a ground invasion soon.

The military's chief spokesman Brig. Gen. Hidai Zilberman told Israeli public television station Kan that tanks, armored personnel carriers and artillery were being readied "for this option for mobilization at any given moment."

The Defense Ministry said Thursday that the latest mobilization approved by Defense Minister Benny Gantz was an "exceptional call-up."

World leaders are calling for peace and de-escalation as violence continues in Gaza.

U.S. President Joe Biden called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in support of Israel's right to defend itself and Secretary of State Antony Blinken said he plans to send a senior diplomat to the region to try to ease tensions in the region, according to the Associated Press.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the United Kingdom is "sad to see what is happening and the cycle of violence that now seems to be taking place."

"I think it's important that we break that cycle and we end this idea of reprisals, and I think that what everybody wants to see is urgent, urgent de-escalation," Johnson told reporters Thursday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres met over video to call for an end to fighting between Israel and Palestinians, the Kremlin said.

"In light of the escalation in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, it was noted that the main goal is to stop violent acts from both sides and ensure the safety of the civilian population," the Kremlin said in a statement.

Government officials in Europe are calling on police to manage protesters organizing in response to the conflict in Gaza.

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin asked police Thursday to ban a pro-Palestine protest planned in Paris this weekend.

"Serious disturbances to public order were seen in 2014," he wrote on Twitter. He also instructed police to be "particularly vigilant and firm."

A Paris, j’ai demandé au Préfet de police d’interdire les manifestations de samedi en lien avec les récentes tensions au Proche-Orient. De graves troubles à l’ordre public furent constatés en 2014. Consigne a été donnée aux Préfets d’être particulièrement vigilants et fermes.

— Gérald DARMANIN (@GDarmanin) May 13, 2021

Pro-Palestine activists have called for a demonstration in the Barbes district of Pairs to protest Israeli actions in the Gaza Strip, according to Al-Jazeera.

In a circular seen by AFP news agency, Darmanin also urged local police chiefs to assure the "protection of places of worship, schools, cultural centers and businesses of the Jewish community."

According to Al-Jazeera, German police detained more than a dozen men in three cities suspected of damaging a synagogue, burning Israeli flags and starting a fire at a Jewish memorial site.

"Security agencies expect intensifying protest activities by Palestinians in Germany as well as parts of the leftist movement," an Interior Ministry spokesman said.

The Israel Defense Force released photos of the "top Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders and terrorists" they have "neutralized" this week.

In a tweet, the IDF said these men were responsible for the rocket attacks against Israel in the last 72 hours.

These are the faces of some of the top Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders and terrorists.

They were responsible for the rocket attacks against Israel in the last 72 hours.

They will never plan another terror attack again. pic.twitter.com/in1w63wOpF

— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 13, 2021

The IDF also said it thwarted four anti-tank missiles Thursday.

We just spotted and struck another squad of Hamas terrorists operating Anti-Tank Missiles inside Gaza.

This is the fourth Anti-Tank Missile attack thwarted by the IDF today.

— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 13, 2021

It is unclear whether any of these men were in the building in Gaza the IDA struck early Thursday morning.

Moments ago, IDF jets and aircraft struck Hamas military intelligence offices in Gaza.

Before the strike, we warned civilians in the building & allowed sufficient time for them to evacuate the site.

We are continuing to strike terror targets in Gaza. pic.twitter.com/6Zt1PcuNHT

— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 13, 2021

According to the Jerusalem Post, the IDF has called up 7,000 reservists serving in artillery, Iron Dome batteries, doctors, paramedics, IAF, intelligence and other combat units as rocket fire continues between Israel and Gaza.

IDF Spokesperson Brig.-Gen. Hidai Zilberman told the Jerusalem Post that a ground invasion remained a viable option, as additional ground troops have been redeployed to the border. Zilberman siad the plans will be presented to IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kohavi and then to the security cabinet for approval later on Thursday.

Incoming flights to Ben Gurion International Airport will be rerouted to Ramon Airports in the south of Israel, the Transportation Ministry told the Associated Press Thursday. Several flights have also been canceled.

However, a spokesman for Hamas' al-Qassam Brigade said that a long-range missile was fired towards Ramon Airport.

"The Ayyash 250 missile, with a range greater than 250km has been launched at Ramon Airport, about 220km from Gaza," Abu Obeida told Al-Jazeera.

Abu Obeida said the rocket launch was a response to the killing of al-Qassam Brigades' senior commanders in Israeli airstrikes.

But Israel Airports Authority told Reuters that no rockets have struck Ramon and that the airport was operating as normal.

The Israeli media reported that the rocket landed in a desert area and no air raid sirens sounded, according to the Associated Press.

United Airlines, Delta Airlines and American Airlines have canceled flights between the United States and Tel Aviv. Spokeswomen for Delta and United told the Jerusalem Post that they have issued travel waivers for flights.

United said it will issue waivers for flights through May 25 and will "continue to monitor the situation. "

Delta will issue waivers for flights between May 11 and 13 and has "no determination about resumption at this juncture."

European airlines are following suit, as British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Spain's airline Iberia have also canceled flights to Tel Aviv, Reuters said.

"The safety and security of our colleagues and customers is always our top priority, and we continue to monitor the situation closely," British Airways said in a statement.

German airline Lufthansa has also suspended its flights to Tel Aviv until Friday, May 14.

"Lufthansa is closely monitoring the current situation in Israel and continues to maintain a close exchange with the authorities, security service providers and our own staff on the ground," the company said in a statement.

According to Reuters, Israel's national airline El Al said it was prepared to operate additional planes to make up for the cancelations of foreign carriers.