Israel has bombarded Gaza with air strikes and Palestinian militants have resumed cross-border rocket fire after an overnight lull during which the UN sent a fuel convoy into the enclave, where it says 52,000 people are now displaced.
Israeli leaders said they would press on, for now, with an offensive to destroy the capabilities of the armed factions Hamas and Islamic Jihad, amid calls by the United States and other world powers for an end to the conflict.
Two Thai workers were killed and seven people were wounded in a rocket strike on an Israeli farm just over the Gaza border on Tuesday, police said. Hamas and Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility.
“The fighting will not cease until we bring total and long-term quiet,” Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz said in a video statement, blaming Hamas for the worst escalation in Israeli-Palestinian fighting in years.
Hamas began firing rockets eight days ago in retaliation for what it said were Israeli rights abuses against Palestinians in Jerusalem. Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank and Israel’s 21 per cent Arab minority staged a general strike on Tuesday in solidarity.
Gaza medical officials say 213 Palestinians have been killed, including 61 children and 36 women. Israeli authorities say 12 people have been killed in Israel, including two children.