ABC NEWS: Israel-Hamas Conflict
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ABC NEWS: Israel-Hamas conflict: Timeline and key developments

The conflict was touched off by the Oct. 7 sneak attack, which included thousands of armed Hamas fighters breaching a border security fence and indiscriminately gunning down Israeli civilians and soldiers taken off guard. Other militants stormed beaches in Israel in motorboats and some brought death from the sky, swooping in on paragliders.

A barrage of rockets

Oct. 7, 6:30 a.m. in Israel

Air raid sirens begin sounding in Jerusalem around 6:30 a.m. local time, warning citizens of the attack in progress and to immediately take cover. An estimated 2,200 rockets were fired toward southern and central Israel, including Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, by the Hamas militants, according to the Israel Defense Forces.

Truth Of The Middle East
Israelis inspect the rubble of a building a day after it was hit by a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip, in Tel Aviv, Israel, Oct. 8, 2023.Oded Balilty/AP

Armed Hamas terrorists, many on motorcycles, storm blockaded areas, shooting at and slaughtering people in kibbutzim and small towns. Video footage surfaces of Hamas militants taking Israeli citizens — including mothers, small children and the elderly — hostage and carrying them across the Gaza border.

Oct. 7, shortly after the attack begins

Mohammed Deif, commander in chief of Hamas’ military arm, Al Qassam Brigades, releases a video statement claiming responsibility for the attack.

“Israel is at war”

Israeli jet fighters launch retaliatory strikes in Gaza. Video surfaces of a high-rise residential building and the Al-Sousi Mosque in Gaza City being bombed and flattened.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells his country, “Israel is at war.”

President Joe Biden tells Netanyahu in a phone call that the United States “condemns” Hamas’ assault and has Israel’s back. In a televised address from the White House, Biden says, “Israel has a right to defend itself and its people.”

Oct. 8, Israel-Hamas conflict

At least 30 Israeli police officers are killed in the fighting, mainly in Sderot, Israel, where Hamas gunmen took control of the police station.

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