Conflicts & War

24 Palestinians killed in Israeli strikes on Gaza

Jerusalem, Aug 6 (EFE).- Twenty-four Palestinians have been killed and more than 220 others wounded since Israel launched a “pre-emptive” offensive on Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), authorities in Gaza said Saturday.

The estimated 350 rockets the PIJ has launched into Israel in response are blamed for roughly a score of injuries, mainly among people who fell while running for bomb shelters.

Most of the rockets were intercepted by Israeli air defense or landed on uninhabited areas, though the PIJ’s targeting of Tel Aviv and other cities in central Israel represents an escalation in terms of tactics.

So far, Hamas, which holds power in Gaza, has not joined the PIJ in firing rockets at Israel.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) continued pounding Gaza throughout the day on Saturday and the toll included the destruction of a five-story residential building.

In the northern town of Jabalia, the site of the largest refugee camp in Gaza, five children and an adult perished in what the PIJ described as an Israeli airstrike, but the IDF claimed was the result of a Palestinian rocket that fell short.

The PIJ said that six of its personnel have died, including senior commander Taysir al-Jabari, the target of Friday’s initial Israeli strike to avert an “imminent threat.”

Israeli media reported that another high-ranking PIJ officer, Khaled Mansour, was killed Saturday, but that was not confirmed by any Palestinian source.

“Operation Breaking Dawn” followed Monday’s arrest of a PIJ leader in the occupied West Bank and Israel’s shutdown of border crossings with Gaza and the closing of multiple roads in Israeli communities bordering the area.

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz said Saturday that he had no plans to halt the offensive.

“Our operational activities against the perpetrators of terrorism will continue and intensify with no limits and restrictions,” he said. EFE


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