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Israel launches airstrikes on targets in Gaza


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Israel launches airstrikes on targets in Gaza

Israeli fighter jets have launched airstrikes on targets in Gaza overnight, in response to what they say was rocket fire from the coastal enclave.

It comes as violence intensifies in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, after two Israelis were killed in a stabbing attack and a Palestinian man was killed in a clash with Israeli soldiers in Tulkarm.

In recent weeks, Israeli police and Palestinians have clashed frequently at the al-Aqsa mosque compound in East Jerusalem. Israel has promised to retain Muslim prayer rites at the holy site, but has often refused entry to young Palestinian men citing security concerns. In response to the stabbing attacks, Palestinians have been banned from entering the walled Old City by police.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed a harsh response to the apparent upsurge in violence saying the country was in an “all-out war against terror”.

The latest bloodshed, which also includes a drive-by shooting in the West Bank that killed an Israeli couple, has triggered fears of wider escalation – especially in the absence of peace talks that collapsed in 2014.

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