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Gaza conflict rages - one week into Israeli offensive


Israel

Gaza conflict rages - one week into Israeli offensive

On day seven, there has been no let-up in Israel’s military offensive against Hamas militants behind rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip.

Rocket launch sites, senior Hamas leaders and buildings used by the Islamist group are the Israelis’ stated targets – but civilians are dying.

More than 170 Palestinians have been killed according to Gaza officials. The UN believes civilians account for 77 percent of the fatalities.

Thousands are fleeing northern Gaza after Israel warned it was intensifying air strikes. Some in Gaza City have taken refuge in a school run by The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA). They are struggling to survive amid the most basic living conditions.

“There is no water in the bathrooms or for drinking. People bring it from outside,” said Manar al Attar, who sought shelter in the building with her children.

“We left our homes and belongings, everything, and came here where there is nothing. It is not even fit for animals. Our children are sleeping on the floor.”

Israel says it shot down a drone from Gaza on Monday, the first reported deployment of an unmanned aircraft by Palestinian militants whose rocket attacks have been regularly intercepted.

Meanwhile rockets were fired at Israel from southern Lebanon, in the third such rocket attack from the neighbouring country since Friday, drawing retaliatory artillery fire from Israeli forces.

In the West Bank, a 21-year-old Palestinian man was reported killed near Hebron, after clashes between the Israeli army and protesters denouncing the Gaza conflict.

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