Death toll in Gaza surpasses 200 as Israel continues to bomb civilian populations
The death toll in Gaza surpassed 200 as Israel continues to bomb civilian populations. Dozens of women and children also among the dead in the Israeli airstrikes.
Before dawn, in the space of just a few minutes, dozens of Israeli strikes bombarded the crowded Palestinian coastal strip controlled by Hamas, according to AFP journalists and the army.
Flames lit up the sky as intense explosions shook Gaza city, sparking widespread power cuts and damaging hundreds of buildings, local authorities said.
Some 3,100 rockets have also been fired by Palestinian fighters toward Israel since the violence escalated on May 10 in the heaviest exchange of fire between the rivals in years, sparked by Israeli violence in Jerusalem.
As well as strikes from the air, Israeli artillery guns surrounding Gaza have also been firing barrages of shells.
Later in the day, dust clouds rose from near Gaza’s port from further explosions.
West Gaza resident Mahdi Abed Rabbo, 39, expressed “horror and fear” at the intensity of the onslaught.
“There have never been strikes of this magnitude,” he said.
Gaza resident Mani Qazaat said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “should realise we’re civilians, not fighters”.
“I felt like I was dying,” he said.