Israeli raids push up toll in Gaza sharply

GMT 08:11 2014 Thursday ,10 July

Arab Today, arab today Israeli raids push up toll in Gaza sharply

Gaza - KUNA

The Israeli Army continued launching fierce air raids on Gaza Strip for the third day running and the strikes Wednesday night and dawn Thursday left many Palestinians between dead and wounded.
The onslaught had intensified in recent hours, coinciding with bombing launched from Israeli navy vessels with highly explosive missiles used in the attacks, this amid reports of "massacres" at different parts of the strip.
Palestinian security sources confirmed the death of over 25 people, mostly civilians, in the raids and the injury of scores others, some severely. The victims included many elderly, women, and children.
"All the victims were killed or injured in the post-midnight till early morning raids," the sources said.
Missiles hit the home of Omar Al-Haj in Khan Younes refugee camp killing eight family members in their sleep, and medical sources said the victims included women and children.
This was preceded by the killing of nine Palestinians when three missiles hit a cafأ© where a large number of Palestinians were watching a world cup match. The attack on the establishment, on the Khan Younes shore, also injured 20 people, some seriously.
Another four Palestinians were killed at dawn when a missile hit a civilian car along a road in eastern Gaza City. The car was hit by one missile at least, said medical sources, adding the victims could not be identified as the corpses were blown apart.
An air raid also targeted the home of Raed Shalat in Nseirat refugee camp in central Gaza where he was killed and his wife was injured, along with four of his children, two of which are now in critical condition.
Israeli aircraft were concentrating the attacks on densely populated areas, mostly on the neighborhoods of Al-Shujaeiyah and Al-Zaytoun in Gaza City.
Security sources estimate that over 100 homes were hit, mostly without warning, killing some 35 people and injuring many others.
According to local radios, one raid targeted the Palestinian Interior Ministry headquarters in western Gaza and levelled the facility completely, and other government and security facilities were also hit.
Yet another raid targeted a cafأ© west of Qarara where six Palestinians were killed, including four siblings.
While security sources confirm a toll of 64 martyrs over the last two days, medical staff give a higher estimate of 77 martyrs with over 550 others injures.
On the Israeli side, Radio Israel reported an expansion of the Israeli Army's operations theatre in Gaza targeting Hamas and other Palestinian groups. It quoted an army spokesman saying Israeli Army air craft targeted some 80 locations used to launch long-range missiles against Israeli targets. Thousands of targets are still to be hit, he said, and the military operations could last for days.
The Palestinian president is meanwhile making contacts and pleading with the international community and the United Nations to intervene to put a stop to the bloody onslaught.

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