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1 killed, 30 injured in airstrikes on Gaza

July 8, 2014 11:09 A.M. (Updated: July 8, 2014 2:49 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli warplanes launched airstrikes on Gaza Tuesday as part of a military offensive dubbed Operation Protective Edge, injuring at least 30 Palestinians after hitting over 50 sites in the Strip overnight, an official said.

At least 30 Palestinians were injured in the series of airstrikes and the body of Rashad Yassin, from al-Nuseirat refugee camp, was found under the rubble of a destroyed house.

Ashraf al-Qidra, Gaza's health ministry spokesman, earlier told Ma'an that two people had been killed in the central Gaza Strip and rescue teams were searching for their bodies.

Yassin is reportedly affiliated with Hamas' al-Qassam Brigades.

Another man was injured when an Israeli missile struck a mosque in Khan Younis, witnesses said.

Al-Qidra said 12 injured Palestinians had been taken to Kamal Adwan hospital in the northern Gaza Strip, six to al-Aqsa hospital in central Gaza, and another six to al-Shifa medical center.

A house was destroyed by an airstrike on Beit Lahiya, al-Qidra said, while airstrikes hit three areas in Gaza City -- the al-Zaytouna neighborhood, the al-Shajaiya neighborhood, and an area near an Islamic center in the al-Sabra neighborhood.

Eight people were injured in the strike on al-Shajaiya and four men and one woman were hospitalized after being injured in the airstrike on al-Sabra.

Warplanes also targeted Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza, with no injuries immediately reported.

Airstrikes also hit the southern Gaza Strip, targeting a home belonging to resident Mahmoud al-Hashash, without causing injuries.

Israel's army said 81 rockets had struck southern Israel on Monday, around a third of them during a short period in the evening.

Early on Tuesday, another six hit the south, a spokesman told AFP.

Sirens sounded in 10 towns, including as far away as Beit Shemesh, 80 kilometers from the Gaza Strip, an army statement said.

Around 16 rockets struck around the southern city of Beersheba, 40 kilometers from Gaza and home to 200,000 people.

Gaza factions take responsibility for rockets

The al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of the Islamic Jihad movement, took responsibility for launching 60 rockets into Israel on Tuesday.

The Brigades said in a statement that it had targeted Beersheba, Ashkelon, and Netivot.

"It is our right to defend our people who are going through this battle alone without Arab or Islamic support," an Islamic Jihad spokesman told Ma'an.

"We are in the middle of the battle supporting our people ... and we are committed to protecting them," the spokesman said.

The al-Nassar Salah al-Din Brigades, the military wing of the Popular Resistance Committees, said earlier it had responded to overnight airstrikes by firing five rockets at Eshkol and another 12 rockets elsewhere in southern Israel.

The National Resistance Brigades, the military wing of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, said in a statement that it had launched three rockets into southern Israel.
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