Escalating violence between Israel and the Islamic group Hamas reached its tenth day on Wednesday (19) with no prospect of a ceasefire, with the Gaza Strip plunged into a humanitarian crisis and a death toll of at least 231 .
Also on Tuesday evening, 52 Israeli Air Force planes dropped 122 bombs in 25 minutes on about 40 underground targets which Israel claims are part of Hamas’ so-called “subway” – more than 12 kilometers of tunnels. where members of the group that controls travel to the Gaza Strip.
According to Israeli armed forces spokesman Hidai Zilberman, at least 10 Hamas and Islamic Jihad operatives were killed during the military offensive in the towns of Khan Younis and Rafah, from where most of the rockets fired until ‘now against Israel would have been fired.
According to the IDF, around 50 rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip into towns in the south of the country, but no damage or injuries were reported overnight.
Palestinian medical officials said 219 people died during the 10 days of airstrikes that destroyed roads, entire buildings and other structures in the Gaza Strip, exacerbating the food shortage, drinking water and medicines, increased the risk of the spread of Covid-19. other diseases and forced more than 52,000 Palestinians to leave their homes.
On the Israeli side, the authorities killed 12 people. The country has an advanced defense system against enemy missiles and rockets that intercepts most projectiles and minimizes damage caused by the conflict. In less tangible aspects, the Israelis have suffered from the coexistence with the bomb warning sirens and the subsequent rush for bomb shelters.
In interviews with Israeli media, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu made no mention of an end to the clashes, despite increasing diplomatic efforts in the name of a ceasefire.
“We are not stopped with a stopwatch. We want to achieve the objectives of the operation. Previous operations have lasted a long time, so it is not possible to set a deadline,” said the prime minister, according to which the military offensive aimed at “forced deterrence” of Hamas.
According to the United Nations humanitarian agency, nearly 450 buildings in Gaza have been destroyed or severely damaged, including six hospitals and nine primary health care centers. Across the city, craters and piles of rubble show the immediate consequences of conflict and heighten concerns about long-term living conditions in the region.
“Anyone who wants to know more about the humanity of the Israelis should come to the Gaza Strip and look at the houses that were destroyed above those who lived there,” university professor Ahmed al-Astal told Reuters , next to the remaining wreckage. news agency from his bombed house in Khan Younis.
According to him, there was no warning before his house was destroyed in an airstrike just before dawn, although Israel says it is issuing alerts for the evacuation of buildings that will be targeted. and that it only attack what it considers military targets.
To foreign envoys, Netanyahu said Israel tries to target its enemies with great precision, but admitted that precision of attacks is not always achievable.
“No matter how surgical an operation may be, even in a hospital operating room, you don’t have the ability to prevent collateral damage around the affected tissue. And certainly in a military operation, you won’t be able to do it, ”he said.
Hamas began firing rockets at Israel on March 10 in retaliation for what it called violations of Israeli rights against Palestinians in Jerusalem during the month of Ramadan, which is sacred to Muslims.
The rocket attacks follow a series of clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinian groups at the al-Aqsa mosque and a trial court ruling that could expel Palestinian families from a disputed neighborhood of East Jerusalem since which was annexed by Israel in 1967.
The streak of violence between Hamas and Israel is the most severe in recent years and has also served as fuel to escalate internal hostilities in Israeli cities that were previously seen as symbols of Arab-Jewish coexistence. There have been hundreds of arrests and local authorities have declared states of emergency and curfews.