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26 Palestinians dead since midnight on 18th day of Gaza offensive
Published Friday 25/07/2014 (updated) 25/07/2014 18:00
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A picture taken from the northern Israel-Gaza border shows Israeli
flares above Palestinian houses in the northern Gaza strip on July 24,
2014 (AFP David Buimovitch)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Some 26 Palestinians have died as a result of Israeli attacks on Gaza since midnight Friday, as reports of a new ceasefire proposal surfaced on the 18th day of the offensive on the Strip.

Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesman for the Palestinian ministry of health, said that the latest deaths brought the death toll since the beginning of the assault to 825.

Over 5,240 Palestinians have been injured since the beginning of the Israeli offensive, al-Qidra said.

The deadliest Israeli airstrike of the night targeted the Rafah family home of 45-year-old Salah Ahmad Abu Hasanin, killing him and three of his sons and injuring 14 others.

His sons were 15-year-old Abd al-Aziz, 12-year-old Hadi, and nine-year-old Abd al-Hadi.

Abu Hasanin was a leader in Islamic Jihad's al-Quds Brigades.

In another attack, Shayma Hussein Abd al-Qader Qannan, 23, was killed in an Israeli shelling on the al-Sheikh Ali family home in Deir al-Balah. The woman was pregnant, and medics in al-Aqsa Martyrs' hospital were able to save her baby.

Later, Walid Said al-Harazin, five, was killed after being hit in the head by an Israeli bullet in al-Shujaiyeh neighborhood.

An Israeli army statement said that "since midnight, 8 rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip towards Israel, whereas 1 was intercepted, and 7 hit Israeli territory."

"Overnight the IDF targeted 45 terror activity sites. Amongst them was a military command post, which included Hamas internal security offices and the office of a Hamas senior operative, Ra'at Habat," the statement said.

"Earlier this morning, in a combined IDF-ISA (army-Shin Bet intelligence agency) effort, Salah Abu Hasim, a member of the PIJ Military Council, was targeted in the southern Gaza Strip."

Truce efforts renewed

Signs of renewed efforts for a Gaza ceasefire were evident on Friday, the day after Israel shelled a UN shelter killing at least 17 Palestinians.

US Secretary of State Kerry, in Cairo trying to negotiate a ceasefire, reached out to Hamas allies Turkey and Qatar on Thursday as he sought to further regional efforts to broker an end to the bloodshed.

His efforts are focused on a week-long humanitarian ceasefire, during which intensive negotiations will tackle the blockade of Gaza and other disputes, Western and Palestinian officials said.

Israel's secretive security cabinet was expected to meet later in the day to discuss truce proposals passed to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by US Secretary of State John Kerry earlier in the week, Israeli media said.

Those reports came after an Israeli shell slammed into a UN facility sheltering displaced Gazans on Thursday, prompting UN chief Ban Ki-Moon to say he was "appalled" at the incident which "underscores the imperative for the killing to stop -- and to stop now".

The Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations wrote to the Security Council demanding action.

"We demand an immediate, impartial, and thorough investigation into this grave incident in order to establish accountability and bring the perpetrators of this crime to justice," said the letter, a copy of which was received by AFP.

Latest casualties amid ongoing strikes

Al-Qidra said Najat Ibrahim al-Najjar, 35, was killed and five others were injured when the house of Ashraf al-Najjar was targeted in Khan Younis.

Additionally, Iyad Nasser Sharab's body was pulled from under the rubble of his house that was targeted overnight in southern Gaza Strip.

Meanwhile, Sharif Muhammad Hassan, 27, Muhammad Khalil Hamad, 18, and Mamduh Ibrahim al-Shawwaf, 25, were killed in an Israeli shelling on Khan Younis.

Two others, Tariq Zahad, 22, and Samer Abu Kamil, 26, were killed in an airstrike on the al-Mughraqa area of central Gaza.

Suleiman al-Shawwaf was killed in Abasan in eastern Khan Younis and three others were injured in Israeli attacks on the area.

Ali Muhammad Asfour, 58, Samir Abdulal al-Najjar, 25, and Muhammad Ibrahim al-Khatib, 27, were also killed in Israeli attacks on Khan Younis.

Eid Muhammad Abu Qteifan, 23, was killed in another attack on Deir al-Balah.

Two other Palestinians were killed by an Israeli attack on Gaza City.

Maram Rajeh Fayyad, 26, from Deir al-Balah succumbed to wounds sustained in an earlier strike.

Mahmoud Suleiman al-Astal, 17, and Laila Ibrahim Zurub, 40, in addition to three unidentified others, succumbed to wounds in Gaza's European hospital.

Mahmoud Asaad Ghabn, 24, succumbed to his wounds in al-Shifaa medical center.

Rabbu Affanah, 28, and Rasmiyeh Salameh, 24, succumbed to their wounds in Khan Younis.

Additionally, al-Qidra said that many were injured in Israeli airstrikes on Sharab family home in Khan Younis.

He added that a Ministry of Health ambulance was targeted by airstrikes on its way to Gaza European hospital from Nasser hospital in Khan Younis.

The driver, doctor, and nurse were injured after being hit by one missile, but were able to flee before the ambulance was hit by another two strikes, destroying it.

Meanwhile, Israeli warplanes targeted Hamza Mosque in Khan Younis with two airstrikes.

AFP contributed to this report
1 ) Horge / Argentina
25/07/2014 13:13
"Israel deserves more than the support of the international community. Israel deserves the admiration of the international community. No military in history has taken greater care than the IDF to protect innocents of the other side." While British Colonel Richard Kemp stated 'IDF does more than any other army to prevent civilian deaths'.

2 ) Brian Cohen / Israel
25/07/2014 13:16
Easy way to stop all this: Hamas declares an immediate end to shooting rockets at Israeli civilians and recognizes the Quartets 3 conditions. That would stop the fighting, open up the borders of Gaza and bring in a flood of relief money. But Hamas does not want peace and refuses to stop targetting civilians. If you want to stop the bloodshed, then Hamas is the address. However, they are jihadists who embrace martyrdom and 1000 "martyred" Gazans for them is a good thing, not a bad thing.

3 ) Levi / USA
25/07/2014 14:42
There is a solution to this "Palestinians dying" issue: Hamas needs to stop shooting rockets at Israel.

4 ) @ the Ambassador / USA
25/07/2014 15:32
* HAMAS is part of the Unity government that appointed, you to the
United Nations, and Hamas fighters are engaging in Daily War Crimes, so
Israel should "demand an immediate, impartial, and investigation into
* TARGETING CIVILIANS in order to establish accountability and to
bring the perpetrators (the Unity Government) of crimes to justice",
AND to exonerate itself, from civilian casualties, due to Hamas fighters

5 ) FlatBaroque / USA
25/07/2014 19:36
May the resistance remain strong, and may they be motivated by the fact that their enemy is committing national suicide even as they think they are committing genocide.

6 ) michael / mexico
26/07/2014 02:51
How can they target an ambulence, and get away with it, not a word from the US or the UK, mind you, they did the same in Iraq didn't they? So now it seems they can also get away with hitting a UN building, since when was this a legitimate target?

7 ) Kora / Belgium
26/07/2014 15:30
I think its a case of if you can hit it, bomb it. Press, ambulance, UN building, woman, child, 87 year old man, all targets!!! Now why would 'Friends of Israel', with their paid up membership cards wish to speak out?

8 ) Helmut / Germany
26/07/2014 20:02
Comments 1 to 5 are simply disgusting and twisting facts are unexapable.
You are a disgrace for the human race!
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