Israel strikes kill 7 on day 24 of Gaza assault

Photo: Israel strikes kill 7 on day 24 of Gaza assault
 / Arab-Israel Relations

Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip early Wednesday killed seven people, medics said, bringing to 1,364 the Palestinian death toll from a bloody 24-day conflict, AFP reported.

A pre-dawn Israeli airstrike killed a man in the central town of Deir al-Balah, emergency services spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra said.

He said two mid-morning strikes killed three more, one in the southern city of Rafah and another two in Deir al-Balah, also men.

A strike in the southern city of Khan Younes killed another three people, Qudra said.

The strikes followed one of the bloodiest days of Israel's campaign against Gaza militants, with more than 100 people killed in a series of strikes and shellfire across the narrow coastal territory.

In two separate incidents Wednesday, 16 people were killed when shells hit a U.N. school used for sheltering displaced Gazans, and 17 people died in shelling of a crowded marketplace.

The conflict, which Israel launched from the air and sea on July 8 and then expanded into a ground offensive on July 17, has killed 1,364 Palestinians, most of them civilians.

Fifty-six Israeli soldiers have died in the fighting, and cross-border rocket fire has killed two Israeli civilians and a Thai migrant worker inside Israel.

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