Israel re-launches strikes on Gaza as 7-hour partial truce ends
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
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.”