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Israel-Hamas fighting resumes

MILES PARKS, HOST:

Israel claims to have hit more than 400 targets in Gaza since a week-long truce with Hamas ended early Friday morning, and according to Gaza's health ministry, the heavy bombardment and ground operations have killed nearly 200 Palestinians. Meanwhile, talks in Qatar to possibly restart a cease-fire broke down. We go now to NPR's Eleanor Beardsley in Tel Aviv for the latest. Hi, Eleanor.

ELEANOR BEARDSLEY, BYLINE: Hi, Miles.

PARKS: So tell us about how Israelis and Palestinians are feeling about the conflict resuming.

BEARDSLEY: Well, I was at a very large rally in Tel Aviv tonight where people were calling to bring back all the hostages. There are still more than 100 Israeli hostages being held in Gaza, and I spoke with 30-year-old Omri Shtivi (ph), whose 28-year-old brother is still being held. He was with a group of people who were holding up big posters of his brother. He says it's very, very hard. Let's listen to him.

OMRI SHTIVI: We are, of course, depressed that the negotiation is stopped by Hamas, and Hamas broke the negotiation, all the deal. And we hope to see all the hostages soon - we hope to see done soon. It's very hard for us. We call to all the world, everyone who will listen, all the world need to go out to shout, to call the leaders, to call the governments, to know the truth, what happened on October 7 and to release the hostages right now. Right now.

BEARDSLEY: You know, he said the only priority should be getting all the hostages out, not the war. You know, I was also today in the Palestinian town of Ramallah talking to people. They, too, are very happy that 240 Palestinians have been released from Israeli prisons. You know, a lot of these Palestinian detainees have not been charged and many were arrested after October 7th. That's the case for 17-year-old Aseel Shadeh, who was arrested in November for allegedly lunging at an Israeli soldier with scissors at a checkpoint, and she was shot in the leg. NPR spoke by phone with her mother, Rima Shadeh (ph). She had been planning a homecoming celebration for her daughter. Here she is.

RIMA SHADEH: (Non-English language spoken).

BEARDSLEY: You know, she says, I was hoping they would release her. Sadly, my hope is all gone now.

PARKS: I know Vice President Kamala Harris spoke about the war while she was in Dubai at the COP28 climate summit. What did the vice president say?

BEARDSLEY: She said Israel has the right to go after Hamas, but it matters how and that Israel must do more to protect innocent civilians. Here's part of what she said.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

VICE PRESIDENT KAMALA HARRIS: Too many innocent Palestinians have been killed. Frankly, the scale of civilian suffering and the images and videos coming from Gaza are devastating.

PARKS: OK. So it seems like the U.S. and then other Arab nations in the region wanted the cease-fire to continue. Can you tell us a little bit more about why talks broke down in Qatar?

BEARDSLEY: Well, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office put out a statement, and they said they pulled their team out because Hamas did not live up to its promise to release all of the women and children. But on Friday, Hamas accused Israel of breaking the cease-fire. So the two sides are very apart. They see nothing the same way. And that was clear to me today. You know, being in Ramallah, speaking to Palestinians and then right afterwards, being in Tel Aviv, speaking to Israelis, it's like two completely different realities. They have different takes and interpretations on the situation, on this war.

Israelis are saying the world is not fully acknowledging the trauma of October 7 and the hostages, while the Palestinians are glued to the news watching the bombing of Gaza, and they say October 7 is one day while they've been under Israeli occupation in the West Bank and had innocent people killed by Israeli forces in Gaza for years. And while Israel talks about eradicating Hamas, the Palestinians I spoke with give Hamas credit for putting the plight of the Palestinian people back at the top of the world's agenda.

PARKS: That's NPR's Eleanor Beardsley in Tel Aviv. Thanks, Eleanor.

BEARDSLEY: You're welcome, Miles. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

Eleanor Beardsley began reporting from France for NPR in 2004 as a freelance journalist, following all aspects of French society, politics, economics, culture and gastronomy. Since then, she has steadily worked her way to becoming an integral part of the NPR Europe reporting team.