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GAZA STRIP, Palestinian Territories: Telecommunication services were cut across besieged Gaza Friday, as Israeli strikes killed dozens in southern cities where hundreds of thousands are struggling to survive hunger and cold on day 98 of the war between Israel and Hamas.

The fighting between Hamas and Israeli forces raged after a night of heavy Israeli shelling, and came amid growing fears of the conflict widening after US and British forces struck pro-Hamas Houthi rebels in Yemen after attacks on Red Sea shipping.

In Gaza, an AFP journalist reported strikes and shelling hitting areas between the territory’s southern cities of Khan Yunis and Rafah, which is crowded with people who have fled from the north.

‘We lost hope’: ravaged Gaza nears 100 days of war

Overnight Thursday-Friday, the bombardment killed at least 59 people and wounded dozens more across the besieged territory, the health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said.

The Israeli military said it had killed seven “terrorists” in a strike in Khan Yunis and a further 20 in the Maghazi area to the north.

AFP footage showed black smoke billowing over Rafah and Khan Yunis.

“Does anyone care about us? Why is everyone silent?” asked one mourner at a hospital where a group of Palestinians had gathered beside white body bags of the latest casualties.

Elsewhere in Rafah, resident Fayad Abu Rjeila surveyed the wreckage of a building after an Israeli strike he said had killed civilians in their homes.

“They had nothing to do with anything. People who just wanted to live,” he told AFP.

“Why did they target them?”

Israel’s military said its ground forces and air strikes had destroyed more than 700 rocket launchers in Gaza since the war began on October 7.

On Friday, all internet and telecommunications services in Gaza were cut as a result of the Israeli bombardment of the Palestinian territory, the main operator Paltel said.

“Gaza is blacked out again,” it said in a post on X, formerly Twitter. Israel’s bombardment of Gaza has killed at least 23,708 people, mostly women and children, according to the latest health ministry figures.

Vowing to eliminate Hamas, Israel has carried out a relentless bombardment, alongside a ground invasion, since Hamas fighters attacked Israel on October 7 and also seized around 250 hostages.

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