Israel’s army said several thousand troops would be taken out of Gaza in the coming weeks, though it has not said publicly whether the withdrawal reflects a new phase of the war. But the move is in line with the plans that Israeli leaders have outlined for a low-intensity campaign, expected to last for much of the year, that focuses on remaining Hamas strongholds.

Still, fierce fighting was ongoing Tuesday in central and southern Gaza. Most of Gaza’s 2.3 million people have fled to the southern portion of the cramped enclave, with more than 85% of the population driven from their homes.

About 1,200 people were killed after Hamas raided southern Israel on Oct. 7, with around 240 people taken hostage.

More than 21,900 Palestinians, two-thirds of them women and children, have been killed since the start of the war, according to the Health Ministry in Hamas-run Gaza, which doesn’t differentiate between civilians and combatants among the dead.


— Israel’s Supreme Court overturns a key component of Netanyahu’s polarizing judicial overhaul.

— The USS Gerald R. Ford aircraft carrier is returning home after extended deployment defending Israel.

— Israel is pulling thousands of troops from Gaza in a possible precursor to a scaled-back offensive.

— U.S. Navy helicopters fire at Yemen’s Houthi rebels, killing several in the latest Red Sea shipping attack.

— Find more of AP’s coverage at:

Here’s what’s happening in the war:

BEIRUT — Several Israeli airstrikes hit the outskirts of Damascus early Tuesday, causing “material damage,” Syrian state media reported.

State news agency SANA, citing an unnamed military official, said the strikes came from the direction of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights at around 4:30 a.m.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based opposition war monitor, reported that the airstrikes hit a Syrian army artillery unit where members of the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah were also stationed.

Israel for years has struck parts of government-held Syria. On the rare occasions it acknowledges the strikes, Israel says it’s targeting Iranian-backed groups there that have backed President Bashar Assad’s government. The observatory said Israel carried out 76 attacks on Syrian territory in 2023.

On Monday, the Israeli military said it had identified five missiles launched from Syria that fell in open areas.

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