Sunday, July 14, 2024

Terrorist Israel pounds Gaza as tensions surge on Lebanon border, martyrs toll at 37,266

Terrorist Israel pounds Gaza as tensions surge on Lebanon border, martyrs toll at 37,266
June 14, 2024 Web Desk

GAZA, Palestine (AFP) - Israeli strikes hit Gaza on Friday as truce talks with Hamas militants failed to progress and tensions surged on Israel's northern border with Lebanon.

The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said Friday that at least 37,266 people have been killed in the territory during more than eight months of war between Israel and Palestinian militants. The toll includes at least 34 deaths during the past 24 hours, a ministry statement said, adding that a total of 85,102 people have been wounded in the Gaza Strip since the war began when Hamas militants attacked Israel on October 7.

Witnesses reported the strikes in various parts of the Gaza Strip in the morning, particularly the centre. At Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in the central city of Deir al-Balah, men gathered over the body of an 11-year-old boy who died during bombardment of nearby Bureij refugee camp.

In a black singlet, the child lay on a floor smeared with fresh blood, a white bandage covering the top half of his face, AFP images showed. Israel's military on Friday said troops continued operations in central Gaza, where warplanes had struck a militant cell and "military structure" in the Zeitun area.

After projectiles were fired from northern Gaza into southern Israel on Thursday night, artillery and aircraft hit the launch sites, the army said. The war began after Hamas's unprecedented October 7 attack on southern Israel which resulted in the deaths of 1,194 people, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally based on Israeli official figures.

Sirens sound

of a broader Middle East conflict have surged again, with Lebanon-based Hezbollah fighters, who are backed by Iran, launching waves of rockets against Israeli military targets on Wednesday and Thursday. Hezbollah said the strikes were retaliation for the Israeli killing of one of its commanders. Sirens sounded on Friday morning in northern Israel, where police said munitions had fallen in the Kiryat Shmona area, with no immediate sign of victims.

The Israeli army said about 40 projectiles were launched, with most intercepted, though some caused fires. An Israeli government spokesman vowed to "respond with force to all aggressions by Hezbollah." Later, Lebanon's National News Agency reported that Israeli "warplanes launched a raid targeting a house" in the town of Janata in Lebanon's south. Two women were killed, village official Hassan Shur said.

'No Eid spirit'

As Muslims worldwide prepare to mark Eidul Azha starting Sunday, Gazans lamented soaring prices and shortages of essential goods – including sacrificial animals for the festival – leaving little to celebrate in the besieged territory.

"There is no Eid spirit," Mohammed Shabat, who like most of Gaza's population has been displaced by the war, said outside his tent in Deir al-Balah. In the Israeli-occupied West Bank, Palestinian officials said an Israeli military raid killed three people in the town of Qabatiyah on Thursday. Israel's military reported it had "eliminated two wanted suspects".

The United States on Thursday condemned the Israeli finance minister's "wrongheaded" decision to redirect $35 million in tax revenue collected on behalf of the Palestinian Authority to families of "victims of terrorism".