Rafah is a Hamas 'stronghold', Israel tells the UN's top court

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Israel lashes out at South Africa's case before the UN's top court, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) describing it as "distorted" and saying Rafah is a "stronghold" for Hamas. The comments by Israel's representatives at the ICJ come as Pretoria urges the court to order a halt to Israel's ground offensive in Rafah. The Hamas attack on October 7 resulted in the death of more than 1,170 people in Israel, most of them civilians, according to an AFP tally based on official Israeli figures. Out of 252 people taken hostage that day, 128 are still being held inside the Gaza Strip, including 38 who the army says are dead.

At least 35,303 Palestinians, mostly civilians, have been killed in the Gaza Strip since the war broke out, according to data provided by the health ministry of Hamas-run Gaza. Israeli military says 279 soldiers have been killed in the Gaza military campaign since the start of the ground offensive on October 27