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Palestine: Cease-fire reached in Gaza with Israel as Israeli air force kills 2 children

15th Jul 2018
Palestine: Cease-fire reached in Gaza with Israel as Israeli air force kills 2 children

By Gulsen Topcu

 

GAZA (AA): Palestinian resistance group Hamas said on Saturday a cease-fire with Israel in Gaza had been reached as Israeli warplanes kill 2 Palestinian children in Gaza.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum said that mediation by Egypt worked out.

Barhum said that many sides tried to talk Israel into stopping the airstrikes, but only Egypt was successful.

The Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine also accepted the agreement with Israel to end the airstrikes.

Daoud Shiha, a spokesman of the movement, speaking to Anadolu Agency said the cease-fire came into force by 8.00 p.m. local time.

They will abide by the cease-fire as long as Israel does, Shiha said.

[Relatives mourn over Amir al-Nimra’s (15) dead body at al-Shifa hospital after Israeli warplanes carried out airstrikes across the Gaza Strip in Gaza City, Gaza on July 14, 2018. ( Mustafa Hassona – Anadolu Agency )]

The Israeli Airforce carried out, on Saturday evening, several airstrikes targeting Gaza, killing two children and wounding at least twenty-five Palestinians in Gaza city, when the missiles struck a building next to a public green park, filled with people.

The Israeli army said in a statement the attacks targeted 40 military sites belonging to Hamas in the northern city of Beit Lahiya.

The army added that 91 rockets were allegedly fired from Gaza to the Israeli side since morning.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said: “Israeli army had dealt Hamas the hardest blow since Operation Protective Edge (2014) and we will increase the strength of our attacks as necessary.”

Israeli warplanes carried out a fresh wave of airstrikes across the blockaded Gaza Strip, killing two Palestinian children.

The warplanes targeted an under-construction building in al-Katiba neighborhood in Gaza, Palestinian ministry said.

Palestinian Health Ministry said Israeli missiles also targeted ambulances, the Central Medical Emergency building, and several mobile clinics.

The targeted public square, known as al-Kateeba, is near al-Azhar and the Islamic Universities, and is surrounded by several government ministries and facilities. It is also used by Palestinian factions when they celebrate certain events, such as the anniversaries of their establishment.

Being one of the few green and public squares in Gaza, it has a public park, slides and swings for the children, and is usually overcrowded with people, especially in the evenings after dark, due to the heat.

According to eyewitnesses, Israel F-16 warplanes fired at least five missiles into the park and a building next to the park, in addition to firing missiles into another area, west of Gaza city, and Palestinian lands in al-Jala’ area, in northern Gaza.

Besides killing the two children, and wounding at least 25 other Palestinians, the Israeli missiles destroyed one ambulance, damaged nine other ambulances, partially damaged three trucks used for transporting medicine and medical supplies, severely damaged a number of administrative offices for medical emergency and transportation, in addition to causing damage to two civilian transporting vehicles.

Amir al-Nimra, 15, and Luey Kuheyl ,14, were confirmed dead and 25 others were wounded in the airstrikes, it added.

According to an Israeli army statement, over 100 rockets were fired from Gaza to the Israeli side since morning.

Saturday’s attacks were the largest since 2014 when the Israeli army launched a devastating war on the Gaza Strip, killing more than 2,000 Palestinians and injuring thousands.

Also, the Israeli army said it had destroyed two underground tunnels in airstrikes in the Gaza Strip.

Hamas spokesperson Fawzi Barhoum said in a written statement that Israel targets Palestinian children deliberately and had killed two Palestinian children.

Tension has been running high across the Gaza Strip amid protests demanding an end to the decades-long Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and lifting an 11-year blockade, which has gutted the coastal enclave’s economy and deprived its roughly 2 million inhabitants of basic commodities.

Since the protests began in March, more than 130 people have been killed – and thousands more injured – by Israeli army fire.

*Muhammad Majid contributed to this report from Gaza

Additional report from Imemc.org

[Photo: Smoke rises after Israeli fighter jets pounded a building in Al Katiba region in Gaza City, Gaza on July 14, 2018.

Photographer: Ashraf Amra/AA]

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