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General
Israel re-launches strikes on Gaza as 7-hour partial truce ends
05-08-2014

JERUSALEM: The Israeli army has re-launched strikes on Gaza following the expiration of a seven-hour partial humanitarian truce. Military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner said operations, including airstrikes, against terrorist infrastructures in Gaza were resuming.

As the ceasefire came to an end, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu again vowed to keep up the military offensive until long-term “quiet and security is established for the citizens of Israel.”

More than 1,880 Palestinians and 64 Israeli soldiers have lost their lives in the almost four-week conflict. Two Israeli civilians and a Thai labourer working in Israel have also died.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron has said his government is also urgently looking into reports a British aid worker was killed in an Israeli airstrike on Sunday in the southern city of Rafah.

Cameron said, “I’m extremely concerned about these reports and we are doing everything we can to get to the bottom (of them) and find out exactly what has happened.” Although violence slowed during Monday’s ceasefire, further fatalities were reported, with both sides accusing each other of launching attacks.

Palestinian medics said three people, including an eight-year-old girl, were killed in a strike on a house in the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City. Another 30 people were injured. Israel said it was looking into the attack, which reportedly took place minutes after the truce began, but claimed at least four rockets had been fired from Gaza into Israel.

The Israeli military had pledged to hold fire from 10am to 5pm (8am to 3pm UK time) to permit the transport of aid and allow displaced Palestinians to return to their homes. However it warned it would hit back if attacked during the break and said troops would fight on in areas of Rafah.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the pause, the sixth attempt at a humanitarian truce, was announced in “an attempt to divert attention from Israeli massacres.”