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No let-up in Gaza fighting as Israel seeks return of missing soldier

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No let-up in Gaza fighting as Israel seeks return of missing soldier


Already reduced to rubble, Gaza was pounded again on Saturday morning by Israel’s military, still seeking the return of a missing soldier Hamas now says may be dead.

Dozens more Palestinians were reported killed overnight with mosques, a university and homes among the buildings destroyed.

“What happened is that they targeted the mosque last night and shot at it with eight big rockets,” said Abdel Karim Adashan, standing near a pile of rubble in Gaza City.

“They destroyed the whole mosque.”

“Everyone died, they were all in pieces, we collected them piece by piece,” said fellow Gazan Omar Abd El Ahel.

“Everyone in this house, he had three kids, him, his wife – five people…all turned into pieces..It is extermination.”

The civilian suffering in Gaza is blamed on Hamas by Israel which claims the Islamist group is using Gazans as human shields.

As Israel pursued its stated objective of stopping Hamas rocket fire, the group’s armed wing said it had fired rockets at Tel Aviv.

Each side blames the other for breaking Friday’s ill-fated truce. Hamas says if Israeli serviceman Hadar Goldin, 23, was caputured he may have died in Israeli hostilities that followed.

Israel has released footage of its operation to seek out and destroy tunnels used by Hamas for cross-border attacks.

Palestinian officials say 1,650 Gazans, mostly civilians, have been killed in this offensive. Some 63 Israeli soldiers and three civilians in Israel have died.

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