The Star Late Edition

180 killed in Mideast conflict


TENSIONS between Israel and militant groups in the Gaza Strip continued yesterday for the seventh day in a row as the death toll in the coastal enclave climbed to 181 and 1 225 others were injured, officials said.

At least 33 Palestinia­ns, including eight children, were killed yesterday in Israeli air strikes on Gaza, in the worst daily toll since bombardmen­t started almost a week ago, local authoritie­s said.

The health ministry in Gaza said in a press statement that since last Monday, 181 Palestinia­ns had been killed, including 52 children and 31 women, and 1 225 others had different injuries.

Militant groups, led by the armed wing of the Palestinia­n Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas), fired barrages of rockets from the Gaza Strip at cities and towns in central and southern Israel.

Israeli fighter jets intensifie­d its airstrikes on buildings, military posts and facilities affiliated with the militants all over the strip, according to security sources.

The sources said that the houses of Hamas chief in the Gaza Strip Yehya Sinwar and his brother were destroyed in the intensive Israeli airstrikes waged on the southern city of Khan Younis, adding that no injuries were reported as the two houses had been evacuated.

Ashraf al-Qedra, spokespers­on for the health ministry in Gaza, said overnight and on Sunday morning, 23 Palestinia­ns were killed and over 50 wounded in the airstrikes on Gaza.

An Israeli army spokespers­on said that in the last 24 hours, Israeli fighter jets struck 90 targets that belong to Hamas and the Islamic Jihad in Gaza, including the houses of Sinwar and his brother Mohammed.

The spokespers­on said that Gaza militants fired more than 120 rockets towards Israel, adding that the Iron Dome air defence system had intercepte­d most of them.

Palestinia­n sources said there are regional and internatio­nal efforts to reach a humanitari­an cease-fire between the two sides.

The sources said Egypt had been trying to pressure the two sides to declare a temporary humanitari­an ceasefire to alleviate the suffering in Gaza until a truce is reached.

The sources added that the Egyptian proposal “was under discussion by the Palestinia­n factions and on the table of the Israeli cabinet for discussion yesterday.”

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