Facing a soaring death toll from Israel's renewed offensive in the southern Gaza Strip, the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden is trying to pressure its ally to minimize civilian deaths while stopping well short of the kind of measures that might force it to listen, such as threatening to restrict military aid.

Top U.S. officials, including Vice President Kamala Harris and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, have urged Israel publicly to conduct a more surgical offensive in the south to avoid the heavy civilian casualties inflicted by its attacks in the north.

About 900 people in Gaza were killed in Israeli airstrikes between Friday — when a truce ended — and Monday, according to the local health ministry, about the same number killed in strikes in the territory over the four days following the Hamas cross-border raid on Israel on Oct. 7, though fewer than the 1,199 who died in the four days following the start of Israel's ground offensive on northern Gaza on Oct 28.