35 Palestinians killed, over 200 injured in Israeli military operation
JERUSALEM: At least 35
Palestinians have died and over 200 have been suffered injuries since Israel
launched a military operation dubbed Protective Edge to stop rocket attacks
from the Gaza Strip, Palestinian medical sources said on Wednesday.
Health ministry spokesman
Ashraf al-Qidra said 11 people were killed on Wednesday, including an
80-year-old woman and five children. Five other people also died as the Israeli
Air Force and naval artillery pounded the Gaza Strip.
The Israeli military
said earlier that it had killed Islamist leader Abdullah Daif-Allahd,
considered responsible for the firing of rockets against Israel, in a joint
operation between the armed forces and the intelligence services.
Tuesday night fired 45 rockets on central and southern Israel without causing
casualties, and continued their attacks Wednesday, activating air raid alarms
in the cities of Ashkelon and Tel Aviv.
The Israeli Defence
Forces (IDF) responded to the rocket attacks Tuesday night by bombing 160
targets of the Islamic factions in the Strip, leaving at least six people dead.
Five members of the al-Qassam Brigades were also killed while trying to
infiltrate Israel through the sea.
Israel’s Iron Dome
missile defense system intercepted most of the rockets launched by the
Palestinian side. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has not ruled out a
ground offensive against Gaza and Israel’s Security Cabinet has called up
40,000 reservists to gradually reinforce regular troops on the border with the
Netanyahu said Tuesday
that Israel should be prepared for a “long, continuous and tough campaign
against Gaza”. The latest crisis between Israel and the Palestinians erupted
June 12, when Israel began a massive search for three Jewish seminary students
who went missing in the West Bank and were found murdered last week.
Israel blamed the
kidnappings on the Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas, which has denied any
role in the three Israelis' deaths, and arrested 500 people, most of them
linked to the group.
Tensions between the
two sides flared after a Palestinian teenager was abducted in Jerusalem last
week and found burned to death hours later in a revenge killing for the murders
of the three Israeli students.
Israeli security forces
have arrested six people in connection with the murder, one of whom has
confessed and confirmed the involvement of the other accused.