The Palestinian Health Ministry said at least 24 Palestinians, including six children, were killed in Israeli air strikes on Friday and Saturday. He said more than 200 people were injured Reuters.
Israel began bombing Gaza on Friday and continued on Saturday. The Israeli army reported bombing weapons depots in residential areas and destroying a number of homes. From Gaza, Islamic Jihad launched hundreds of rockets at Israel as far as the second city of Tel Aviv. As far as is known, there were no casualties on the Israeli side.
Hamas, the Islamist group that controls the Strip, blames Israel for the deaths in a bombing near the Jabalaya refugee camp. However, the IDF says the explosion was caused by a failed missile launch by Islamic Jihad. This will be shown on video, but the news agency Reuters Pictures cannot be verified.
Shortly before Friday’s attack, Israel halted a planned fuel shipment to Gaza. As a result, the only power plant in the enclave was closed. Electricity was reduced to approximately eight hours a day. The healthcare sector fears that hospitals will face severe consequences of the lack of capacity within a few days.
Neighboring Egypt says it is in intensive talks to calm the situation. A senior Egyptian intelligence delegation arrived in Israel on Saturday and wants to mediate in Gaza.
The cross-border conflict, which ended more than a year of relative calm around Gaza, began when Israel launched a surprise attack on Friday. A high-ranking Islamic Jihad leader was killed, and a series of targets were hit, according to Israel.
The UN Security Council will meet behind closed doors on Monday to discuss the air strikes on the Gaza Strip. The United Arab Emirates, Ireland, France, Norway and China had requested this.
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