Gaza rocket hits near southern Israeli city in show of defiance

Frederick Owens
August 10, 2018

According to the Health Ministry in the Hamas-controlled enclave, Kammash and her daughter were killed in an airstrike in Jafarawi in central Gaza, the ministry said, while her husband was injured.

The Israeli strike later Thursday, after the rocket landed near Beersheba, hit a building that Palestinians say housed a cultural centre and other offices in the middle of the city.

Israeli sirens continued to blare, warning of incoming rockets, while airstrikes hit more targets in Gaza, even after Palestinian factions declared that the round of violence was "over".

Israel did not formally comment on the issue, but an Israeli official, speaking on condition of anonymity, denied a cease-fire had been reached.

An Egyptian-Palestinian cultural society also has an office in the building.

"While Hamas focuses on violence toward their Israeli neighbors, they have neglected and utterly failed to build the infrastructure and systems to make life better in Gaza".

Israeli airstrikes have killed at least three people, including a pregnant mother and her 18-month-old child, after the Israeli military and Hamas traded fire overnight and into Thursday afternoon, the Gaza Health Ministry reported. According to the Jerusalem Post, more than 200 rockets and mortars were launched since August 8, leaving 28 Israelis injured.

IDF said demonstrators were throwing rocks and burning tires at Israeli troops, causing them to respond with live fire "in accordance with the rules of engagement".

After four hours of discussion about the escalation in the south and the hard situation in which Israelis there are living, Israel's Ministerial Committee on National Security instructed the IDF to "continue to act with force against terrorist elements". Medical officials said at least seven bystanders were wounded.

In the Gaza Strip, power generation is so paltry that, even with imports from Israel and Egypt, it gets just one-third of what it needs - so the 2 million Gazans struggle on with an average of just four hours of electricity a day.

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The sun may be free, but the technology is not, and Palestinians say their ability to import solar panels has been hampered by Israeli border controls.

Rocket warning sirens sounded nearly non-stop in the southern Israeli towns and border communities near Gaza from sunset on Wednesday.

i24NEWS Defense Correspondent Daniel Tsemach contributed reporting from southern Israel.

He added that "if the current escalation however is not contained immediately, the situation can rapidly deteriorate with devastating consequences for all people".

"Everyday life in besieged Gaza is shaped by Israeli policy", IMEU added, posting a video compilation that captures the living conditions of millions of the almost two million people living in the occupied Gaza Strip.

Israel's Permanent Representative to the U.N., Danny Danon, on Twitter put the blame for the more than 180 rockets launched at Israel on Hamas, and said the rockets were "aimed at innocent civilians".

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas earlier urged the United Nations to stop Israel's latest aggression against Gaza, which has been under a crippling Israeli siege for the past decade. One Israeli soldier was killed by a Palestinian sniper.

Palestinian protesters were expected to gather along the Israeli border on Friday evening, as they have every week since late March.

The development comes after two days of Israeli aerial raids against at least 150 positions in Gaza.

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