GAZA CITY (Ma’an): The overnight death toll on Saturday morning hit 22 after Palestinian civil defense rescue teams pulled ten bodies out of the debris of a home in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip as Israeli forces continued their military offensive against the Gaza Strip by air, sea, and land for the twelfth day.
The killings follow the deadliest day in the conflict so far, after Israel killed at least 63 Palestinians and injured more than 400 on the first day of their ground invasion of the besieged coastal enclave.
Spokesman for the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza Ashraf al-Qidra said on Saturday that Israeli forces had “committed a massacre against Palestinian civilians” in the Khan Younis district in the southern Gaza Strip overnight, killing eight.
He identified the victims as 20-year-old Yahya Bassam al-Serri, Muhammad Bassam al-Serri, 17, Mahmoud Ridha Salihiyya, 56, Mustafa Ridha Salihiyya, 21, Wasim Ridha Salihiyya, 15, Muhammad Mustafa Salihiyya, 22, Ibrahim Jamal Kamal Nasr, 13, and Khalid Nasr.
Twenty people were injured in the same attack including some seriously injured.
Al-Qidra also said that 27-year-old Raed Walid Laqan was killed in Khan Younis by an Israeli attack on a home belonging to the Tartouri family.
Shortly after that, medical sources announced the death of Khalid al-Qarra of wounds he sustained earlier on Saturday.
Israeli forces also killed 26-year-old Iyad Ismail al-Ruqab in the Bani Suheila village in the Khan Younis district.
Amjad Salim Shaath, 15 succumbed to wounds he sustained in Moraj neighborhood in Khan Younis. Two of his brothers, Ahmad and Muhammad, were killed in the same Israeli attack.
In addition, 30-year-old Said Ali Issa was killed in Juhor Addik neighborhood in the central Gaza Strip near al-Bureij refugee camp.
34-year-old Ahmad Mahmoud Hasan Aziz was killed by an Israeli missile on his home in Abraj al-Nada in the northern Gaza Strip overnight as well.
Saturday morning’s deaths bring the total death toll of 12 days of Israeli military offensive in Gaza to 314 in addition to 2268 injuries, according to al-Qidra.
The spokesman highlighted that Friday was the deadliest day of Israel’s military aggression on Gaza with 52 Palestinians killed as of midnight.
The Palestinian Ministry of Health confirmed that at least 71 children, 25 women and 17 elderly people have been killed in Israel’s assault on Gaza as of Friday night.
Israel launched its assault on the Gaza Strip — which it has dubbed “Operation Protective Edge” — in response to rocket fire from the area, which had increased in the weeks before the operation due to a massive Israeli military operation in the West Bank.
10 Palestinians died, more than 130 were injured, and more than 600 Hamas-affiliated individuals were arrested during that operation, which was launched following the disappearance of three Israeli youths in June.
Israel accused Hamas of being behind the disappearance, and in addition to the assault on the West Bank launched nightly airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, which has been under a full economic blockade for the last seven years.
Hamas, however, denied the charges, and many have accused Israel of using the subsequent deaths of the three Israeli teenagers as a pretext for a widespread assault on the group.