Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Gaza: No ceasefire in sight as violence continues

ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers prepare weapons in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers sleep next to their tanks in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers prepare weapons in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers wake in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers sleep in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers sleep next to their tanks in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers perform morning prayers in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli soldier sleeps next to tanks in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli soldier stands near tanks in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
Israeli soldiers prepare weapons in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers perform their morning prayers in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers perform their morning prayers in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ASHDOD, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) A Israeli man plays pool as others stand in a billiard room used as a shelter while air raid sirens sound November 19, 2012 in Ashdod, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: A man sits on a discarded armchair on a hill overlooking Gaza as Israeli forces continue to bombard Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: A plume of smoke rises above Gaza City after an Israeli airstrike on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: An Israeli soldier on route to the border with Gaza gestures a victory sign on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli soldiers prepare an artillery emplacement overlooking Gaza on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli soldier prepares for morning prayers in a deployment area on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. The death toll has risen to at least 85 killed in the air strikes, according to hospital officials, on day six since the launch of operation 'Pillar of Defence.' (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Smoke and dust drift across Gaza Strip at sunset after Israeli airstrikes on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli artillery shells attack a target in the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Smoke trails from a militant rocket cross the evening sky as they head into Israel on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ASHDOD, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis walk down to a shelter while air raid sirens sound November 19, 2012 in Ashdod, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Smoke trails from a militant rocket cross the evening sky as they head into Israel on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: A plume of smoke rises above Gaza City at sunset after an Israeli airstrike Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: A plume of smoke rises above Gaza City at sunset after an Israeli airstrike Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli artillery shells attack a target in the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli artillery shells attack a target in the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli artillery shells attack a target in the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli artillery shells attack a target in the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER - ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: Israeli artillery shells attack a target in the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
ASHDOD, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis stand in a billiard room used as a shelter while air raid sirens sound November 19, 2012 in Ashdod, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
Smoke is seen from an explosion by a high rise housing media organizations in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. It is Israel's second strike on the building in two days
CAIRO, EGYPT - NOVEMBER 19: In this handout photo provided by the United Nations, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (L) meets with Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr November 19, 2012 in Cairo, Egypt. Ban arrived in Cairo to support Morsi's efforts to mediate a truce. He is scheduled to visit Jerusalem and the West Bank city of Ramallah this week for talks with Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on the crisis in Gaza. (Photo by Evan Schneider/UN via Getty Images
ASHKELON, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis take cover in a stairway during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Ashkelon, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
ASHKELON, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) 22An Israeli youth cries after a rocket was launched from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Ashkelon, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli girl takes cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli child plays in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli girl holds her sister as they take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NITZAN, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 19: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli children play in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter on November 19, 2012 in Nitzan, Israel. According to reports November 19, 2012, at least 90 Palestinians have been killed and more than 700 wounded during the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
An Israeli air force F-15 Eagle jet fighter plane takes off from Tel Nof air force base for a mission over Gaza Strip in central Israel, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Israeli soldiers lie on the ground as an Iron Dome missile is launched near the city of Ashdod, Israel, Monday Nov 19. 2012. Israeli aircraft struck crowded areas in the Gaza Strip and killed a senior militant with a missile strike on a media center Monday, driving up the Palestinian death toll to 96, as Israel broadened its targets in the 6-day-old offensive meant to quell Hamas rocket fire on Israel. (AP Photo/Moti Milrod) ISRAEL OUT
Palestinians remove debris from a building that was damaged after an Israeli strike, in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. It's the Israel's military second strike on the building in two days. Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad says an Israeli strike on a Gaza media center has killed one of its top militant leaders. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Palestinians firefighters try to extinguish a fire after an Israeli strike on a building of Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad says an Israeli strike on a Gaza media center has killed one of its top militant leaders. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Smoke rises following an Israeli attack on smuggling tunnels on the border between Egypt and Rafah, southern Gaza Strip, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Smoke rises after an Israeli forces strike in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. The same area was also struck on Sunday.
A member of the Abdel Aal family is rescued after their house collapsed during an Israeli forces strike in the Tufah neighbourhood, Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012
Israeli soldiers sleep next to their armored personal carriers in a staging area near the Israel Gaza Strip Border, southern Israel, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. The Palestinian civilian death toll mounted Monday as Israeli aircraft struck densely populated areas in the Gaza Strip in a campaign to quell militant rocket fire menacing nearly half of Israel's population. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Fire is seen from the explosion at a high rise housing media organizations in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. It's the Israel's military second strike on the building in two days. The Hamas TV station, Al Aqsa, is located on the top floor. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke and fire are seen from the explosion by a high rise housing media organizations in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. It's the Israel's military second strike on the building in two days. The Hamas TV station, Al Aqsa, is located on the top floor. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke and fire are seen from an explosion by a high rise housing media organizations in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. It's the Israel's military second strike on the building in two days. The Hamas TV station, Al Aqsa, is located on the top floor. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke and fire are seen from an explosion by a high rise housing media organizations in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. It's the Israel's military second strike on the building in two days. The Hamas TV station, Al Aqsa, is located on the top floor. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Fireworks are thrown at Israeli security forces during clashes against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip, in Qalandia checkpoint, near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Monday, Nov 19, 2012. Israeli aircraft struck crowded areas in the Gaza Strip and killed a senior militant with a missile strike on a media center Monday, driving up the Palestinian death toll to 96, as Israel broadened its targets in the 6-day-old offensive meant to quell Hamas rocket fire on Israel. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
An Israeli air force F-15 Eagle jet fighter plane takes off from Tel Nof air force base for a mission over Gaza Strip in central Israel, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Birzeit University students take cover behind the university's sign as they protest against Israel's military action on the Gaza Strip in Birzeit, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. Israeli aircraft struck crowded areas in the Gaza Strip and killed a senior militant with a missile strike on a media center Monday, driving up the Palestinian death toll to 96, as Israel broadened its targets in the 6-day-old offensive meant to quell Hamas rocket fire on Israel. (AP Photo/Nasser Shiyoukhi)
Smoke rises after an Israeli air strike in Gaza City, Monday, Nov. 19, 2012. Israeli aircraft struck crowded areas in the Gaza Strip and killed a senior militant with a missile strike on a media center Monday, driving up the Palestinian death toll to 96, as Israel broadened its targets in the 6-day-old offensive meant to quell Hamas rocket fire on Israel. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinians sift through the rubble of a family house following an Israeli airstrike in Gaza City (AP)
Palestinians run away from a damaged building after an Israeli airstrike in Gaza City (AP)
Israeli soldiers march in a gathering area near the Israel Gaza Strip border, in southern Israel (AP)
OFAKIM, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis inspect the damage to a house that was hit by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip on November 18, 2012 in Ofakim, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
YAD MORDEHAI, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Ultra Orthodox Jewish men sing and dance for Israeli soldiers on their way to the Gaza border on November 18, 2012 in Yad Mordehai, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
YAD MORDEHAI, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Ultra Orthodox Jewish men sing and dance for Israeli soldiers on their way to the Gaza border on November 18, 2012 in Yad Mordehai, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
ASHKELON, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis gather next to a house that was hit by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip on November 18, 2012 in Ashkelon, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
ASHKELON, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli workers inspect the damage to a house that was hit by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip on November 18, 2012 in Ashkelon, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
Israeli soldiers tend to their tanks in a deployment area on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip, on November 18, 2012
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers stand on and around their tanks in a deployment area on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip, on November 18, 2012 , in Israel. Israeli shelling of Gaza has entered its fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
Israeli soldiers stand on and around their tanks in a deployment area on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip, on November 18, 2012
ISRAEL/GAZA BORDER, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli soldiers do their morning prayers in a deployment area on Israel's border with the Gaza Strip, on November 18, 2012 , in Israel. Israeli shelling of Gaza has entered its fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 17: (ISRAEL OUT) Left wing Israeli activists demonstrate against the Israeli airstrike in Gaza on November 17, 2012 in Tel Aviv, Israel. At least 39 Palestinians and three Israeli's have died since conflict began four days ago. Israeli troops have been massing on the border as some 200 targets were hit overnight in Gaza, including Hamas cabinet buildings. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 17: (ISRAEL OUT) Left wing Israeli activists demonstrate against the Israeli airstrike in Gaza on November 17, 2012 in Tel Aviv, Israel. At least 39 Palestinians and three Israeli's have died since conflict began four days ago. Israeli troops have been massing on the border as some 200 targets were hit overnight in Gaza, including Hamas cabinet buildings. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 17: (ISRAEL OUT) Right wing activists wave the Israeli flag as left wing Israeli activists demonstrate against the Israeli airstrike in Gaza on November 17, 2012 in Tel Aviv, Israel. At least 39 Palestinians and three Israeli's have died since conflict began four days ago. Israeli troops have been massing on the border as some 200 targets were hit overnight in Gaza, including Hamas cabinet buildings. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 17: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli civilians watch by the Iron Dome defense system launch site on November 17, 2012 in Tel Aviv, Israel. At least 39 Palestinians and three Isreali's have died since conflict began four days ago. Israeli troops have been massing on the border as some 200 targets were hit overnight in Gaza, including Hamas cabinet buildings. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
TEL AVIV, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 17: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli civilians run for cover during a rocket attack launched from from Gaza on November 17, 2012 in Tel Aviv, Israel. At least 39 Palestinians and three Isreali's have died since conflict began four days ago. Israeli troops have been massing on the border as some 200 targets were hit overnight in Gaza, including Hamas cabinet buildings. (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
A member of the Abdel Aal family is rescued after his family house collapsed during an Israeli forces strike in the Tufah neighborhood, Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The Israeli military widened its range of targets in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to include the media operations of the Palestinian territory's Hamas rulers, sending its aircraft to attack two buildings used by both Hamas and foreign media outlets. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
A Palestinian boy stands next to a destroyed car after an Israeli airstrike in the Jabaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The Israeli military widened its range of targets in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to include the media operations of the Palestinian territory's Hamas rulers, sending its aircraft to attack two buildings used by both Hamas and foreign media outlets. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Palestinians inspect the rubble of a destroyed house after an Israeli airstrike next to a mosque, back, in the Jabaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The Israeli military widened its range of targets in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to include the media operations of the Palestinian territory's Hamas rulers, sending its aircraft to attack two buildings used by both Hamas and foreign media outlets. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Smoke rises during an explosion from an Israeli forces strike in Gaza City, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. Israel bombarded the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip with nearly 200 airstrikes early Saturday, the military said, widening a blistering assault on Gaza rocket operations by militants to include the prime minister's headquarters, a police compound and a vast network of smuggling tunnels. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
An Israeli Iron Dome missile is launched near the city of Be'er Sheva, southern Israel, to intercept a rocket fired from Gaza Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. Israel bombarded the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip with nearly 200 airstrikes early Saturday, the military said, widening a blistering assault on Gaza rocket operations to include the prime minister's headquarters, a police compound and a vast network of smuggling tunnels. (AP Photo/Ahikam Seri)
Smoke rises following an explosion after an Israeli forces strike in Gaza City, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. Israel bombarded the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip with nearly 200 airstrikes early Saturday, the military said, widening a blistering assault on Gaza rocket operations by militants to include the prime minister's headquarters, a police compound and a vast network of smuggling tunnels. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
An injured Palestinian lies on the ground during a protest against the Israeli military operations in Gaza Strip near the West Bank city of Nablus, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Nasser Ishtayeh)
Palestinian carry an injured youth during a protest against Israel's operations in Gaza Strip, outside Ofer, an Israeli military prison near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
A Palestinian tries to throw back tear gas canister during a protest against Israel's operations in Gaza Strip, outside Ofer, an Israeli military prison near the West Bank city of Ramallah, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)
RAMALLAH, WEST BANK - NOVEMBER 18: In this handout image supplied by the office of the Palestinian president, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas conducts a meeting of the Palestinian leadership on November 18, 2012 in Ramallah, West Bank. Abbas has reportedly reached out to Arab and Western leaders for aid in the face of the heightening conflict between Israel and Gaza. (Photo by Thaer Ghanaim /PPO via Getty Images)
OFAKIM, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli emergency personnel inspects the damage to a car that was hit by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip on November 18, 2012 in Ofakim, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
OFAKIM, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis inspect the damage to a house that was hit by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip on November 18, 2012 in Ofakim, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
OFAKIM, ISRAEL- NOVEMBER 18: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis inspect the damage to a house that was hit by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip on November 18, 2012 in Ofakim, Israel. Israeli/Gaza attacks have entered the fifth day, with two media buildings being recently struck and several journalists subsequently injured. According to health officials in Gaza, at least 50 Palestinians have been killed since Israel launched operation Pillar of Defence. So far three Israelis have died in the exchange of missiles which followed an air strike on Wednesday that killed Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari. (Photo by Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images)
A Palestinian woman sits in rubble following an Israeli air strike in Rafah refugee camp in southern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. An Israeli envoy held talks with Egyptian officials Sunday on a ceasefire in his country's offensive on Gaza as Israel widened the range of its targets, striking more than a dozen homes of Hamas militants and two media officials. (AP Photo/Eyad Baba)
Israeli soldiers march in a gathering area near the Israel Gaza Strip border, in southern Israel, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. President Barack Obama on Sunday defended Israel's airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, but he warned that escalating the offensive with Israeli ground troops could deepen the death toll and undermine any hope of a peace process with the Palestinians. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Palestinians run away from a damaged building after an Israeli air strike in Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. Israel widened the range of targets in its Gaza offensive Sunday, striking more than a dozen homes of suspected Hamas militants and two media offices, according to security officials and witnesses. The attacks also damaged adjacent houses, killing seven civilians, including five children, health officials said. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Hamas officer inspects an unexploded Israeli bomb in Gaza City, Saturday, Nov. 17, 2012. Israel bombarded the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip with more than 180 airstrikes early Saturday, the military said, widening a blistering assault on militant operations to include the prime minister's headquarters, a police compound and a vast network of smuggling tunnels. The new attacks followed an unprecedented rocket strike aimed at the contested holy city of Jerusalem that raised the stakes in Israel's violent confrontation with Palestinian militants. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Palestinians hurry away from a damaged building after an Israeli air strike in Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. Israel widened the range of targets in its Gaza offensive Sunday, striking more than a dozen homes of suspected Hamas militants and two media offices, according to security officials and witnesses. The attacks also damaged adjacent houses, killing seven civilians, including five children, health officials said. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A man stands in the window of a damaged house after a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from Gaza Strip landed in Ashkelon, southern Israel, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. Israel launched the operation last Wednesday by assassinating Hamas' military chief and carrying out dozens of airstrikes on rocket launchers and weapons storage sites. Over the weekend, the operation began to target Hamas government installations as well, including the offices of its prime minister and attacks on a major training base and the two media centers. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
Palestinian Yoused Abu Khoussa, carries the body of his year-and-a-half old son Iyad, during his funeral in Bureij Refugee Camp, central Gaza Strip, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The baby boy was one of five Palestinian children killed in Israeli strikes on Sunday, according to a Gaza health official.(AP Photo/Adel Hana)
A Palestinian boy holds a toy rifle during a protest against the Israeli offensive in Gaza, near the U.N. headquarters in Beirut, Lebanon, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)
Palestinians walk through the debris after an Israeli air strike on building in Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The Israeli military widened its range of targets in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to include the media operations of the Palestinian territory's Hamas rulers, sending its aircraft to attack two buildings used by both Hamas and foreign media outlets. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Osama Abdel Aal is rescued after his family house collapsed during an Israeli forces strike in the Tufah neighborhood, Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The Israeli military widened its range of targets in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to include the media operations of the Palestinian territory's Hamas rulers, sending its aircraft to attack two buildings used by both Hamas and foreign media outlets. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Osama Abdel Aal is rescued after his family house collapsed during an Israeli forces strike in the Tufah neighborhood, Gaza City, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. The Israeli military widened its range of targets in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to include the media operations of the Palestinian territory's Hamas rulers, sending its aircraft to attack two buildings used by both Hamas and foreign media outlets. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
An Israeli soldier prays next to a tank along the Israel Gaza border in southern Israel, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. Israeli strikes hit two media centers in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, as Israel warned it was widening its range of targets to go after military commanders of the territory's Hamas rulers. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov)
A filmmaker has described how he nearly fell victim to the Israeli airstrikes which have rocked Gaza (AP)
Israeli soldiers gather in a staging ground near the border with Gaza Strip (AP)
Palestinian firefighters work at the scene of an Israeli air strike on a building in the Jebaliya refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip (AP)
SDEROT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 16: (ISRAEL OUT) Smoke plumes rise over Gaza following Israel Air Force bombing on November 16, 2012 near Sderot, Israel. Conflict between the Israeli military and Palestian miltants has intensified over the last few days, with Israel striking some 130 targets overnight. According to reports, 18 Palestians and three Israelis have been killed. Egypt's prime minister Hisham Qandil is due to make a brief visit to Gaza today and Israel have vowed to suspend fire for the duration of his visit, provided there's no cross border attacks from militants. (Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images)
Relatives and friends carry the body of Palestinian child Faris Basyoni during his funeral in Gaza. Relatives say he was killed after an Israeli airstrike hit his family house. (AP)
The car in which Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing, was killed in Gaza City (AP)
People carry the body of Ahmed Abu-Daqa, 11, during his funeral in Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip (AP)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli woman sits inside a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli woman and children sit inside a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) An Israeli woman and children sit inside a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli stand outside a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT )An Israeli man and child wait for a bus to leave town on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT ) People wait for a bus to leave town on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli children sit in a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis watch Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu on TV in a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT )An Israeli man and child wait for a bus to leave town on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli children play games at a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli children sit in a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis watch TV in a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israeli children sit in a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
NETIVOT, ISRAEL - NOVEMBER 14: (ISRAEL OUT) Israelis watch TV in a bomb shelter on November 14, 2012 in Netivot, Israel. Israel Defense Forces launched aerial attacks on targets in Gaza that killed the top military commander of Hamas, (Photo by Uriel Sinai/Getty Images)
People look at a wreckage of the car in which was killed Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. The Israeli military said its assassination of the Hamas military commander marks the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Columns of smoke rise following an Israeli air strike on a house in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. Palestinian witnesses say Israeli airstrikes have hit a series of targets across Gaza City, shortly after the assassination of the top Hamas commander. Hamas security officials say two Hamas training facilities were among the targets in the Wednesday afternoon bombings. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
Palestinian security forces wheel into a hospital the body of Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing, in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. The Israeli military said its assassination of the Hamas military commander marks the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)
Columns of smoke rise following an Israeli air strike in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. Palestinian witnesses say Israeli airstrikes have hit a series of targets across Gaza City, shortly after the assassination of the top Hamas commander. Hamas security officials say two Hamas training facilities were among the targets in the Wednesday afternoon bombings. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
People gather around a wreckage of the car in which was killed Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. The Israeli military said its assassination of the Hamas military commander marks the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
People look at a wreckage of the car in which was killed Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. The Israeli military said its assassination of the Hamas military commander marks the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
People look at a wreckage of the car in which was killed Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. The Israeli military said its assassination of the Hamas military commander marks the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
People look at a wreckage of the car in which was killed Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing in Gaza City, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. The Israeli military said its assassination of the Hamas military commander marks the beginning of an operation against Gaza militants. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)
ISRAEL OUT - An Israeli man stands next to a car damaged by a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from the Gaza Strip in the southern Israeli city of Beersheva. Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. (AP Photo/Ilan Assayag)
Image from aerial footage made available by the Israeli Defense Force Wednesday Nov. 14, 2012 shows the car of Hamas military chief, Ahmad Jabari, circled, moments before an airstrike hit. Israel killed the commander of the Hamas military wing in one of some 20 airstrikes on the Gaza Strip Wednesday, the heaviest barrage on the Palestinian territory in four years in retaliation for renewed rocket fire on southern Israel. (AP Photo/ IDF video via APTV)
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivers a statement to the media at Hakirya a military base in Tel Aviv, Israel, Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012. Israel's prime minister says the military is prepared to broaden its operation against Hamas targets in Gaza. Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel cannot tolerate continued rocket attacks against its citizens. In his first comments since Israel killed the commander of the Hamas military wing, Netanyahu said Wednesday that Israel is "prepared to expand the operation". (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
The car in which Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing, was killed in Gaza City (AP)
Smoke rises following an Israeli air strike in the northern Gaza Strip amid an increase in violence in the region (AP)
The car in which Ahmed Jabari, head of the Hamas military wing, was killed in Gaza City (AP)
Rockets fired by Palestinian militants at southern Israel leave a thin trail of white smoke, seen between buildings in Gaza City.(AP)
Palestinian mourners in Gaza carry the body of Hamas' top military commander Ahmed Jabari, killed in an Israeli strike (AP)
Palestinian mourners in Gaza carry the body of Hamas' top military commander Ahmed Jabari, killed in an Israeli strike (AP)

Israel and Gaza's Hamas rulers traded fire and ceasefire proposals with threats to escalate their border conflict as no deal appeared near.

An Israeli air strike targeting a Gaza media centre killed a senior militant and engulfed the building in flames, while Gaza fighters fired 95 rockets at Israel, nearly one-third of them intercepted by an Israeli missile shield.

A total of 38 Palestinians were killed yesterday. Two more Palestinians were killed in air strikes past midnight, bringing the death toll since the start of Israel's offensive to 111, including 56 civilians. Around 840 people have been wounded, including 225 children, Gaza heath chiefs said. Three Israeli civilians have been killed and dozens wounded.

Over the weekend, civilian casualties in Gaza rose sharply after Israel began targeting the homes of what it said were suspected militants. Two such strikes late yesterday killed five people - a father and his four-year-old twin sons in northern Gaza and two people in the south, medics said.

Jamal Daloo, who lost his wife, a son, four grandchildren and five other members of his family in an attack on Sunday, sat in quiet mourning yesterday next to the ruins of his home, his face streaked with tears.

"The international public opinion witnessed the facts," he said, speaking as his 16-year-old daughter Yara was still missing under the rubble being cleared away by bulldozers. "This does not require my words."

Egypt, the traditional mediator between Israel and the Arab world, was at the centre of a flurry of diplomatic activity yesterday. Egyptian intelligence officials met separately in Cairo with an Israeli envoy and with Khaled Mashaal, the top Hamas leader in exile.

Hamas wants Israel to halt all attacks on Gaza and lift tight restrictions on trade and movement in and out of the territory that have been in place since Hamas seized Gaza by force in 2007. Israel demands an end to rocket fire from Gaza and a halt to weapons smuggling into Gaza through tunnels under the border with Egypt.

With positions far apart on a comprehensive deal, some close to the negotiations suggested Egypt was first seeking a halt to fighting before other conditions were discussed.

Mashaal said Hamas would agree to a ceasefire only if its demands were met. "We don't accept Israeli conditions because it is the aggressor," he said. "We want a ceasefire along with meeting our demands."

Mashaal also suggested that Israel's threat of invading Gaza was simply a ploy. He said Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu "is waving the threat of a ground offensive and asking the world to pressure Egypt, Turkey and Qatar, so they pressure Hamas".

"He wants to negotiate with us under fire to impose his conditions, pretending he is acting from a position of strength," Mashaal added.

Israeli leaders have repeatedly threatened to widen the offensive, saying an invasion is an option. Israel has amassed troops on the Gaza border and begun calling up thousands of reservists.

But an Israeli official emphasised that Israel hopes to find a diplomatic solution.

"We prefer the diplomatic solution if it's possible. If we see it's not going to bear fruit, we can escalate," he said. He added that Israel wanted international guarantees that Hamas would not rearm or use Egypt's Sinai region, which abuts Gaza, for militant activity.

As part of global efforts to end the Gaza fighting, United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon arrived in Cairo yesterday and will meet Israel's president Shimon Peres today.

The UN Security Council held closed-door consultations at the request of Russia, whose ambassador Vitaly Churkin later accused one country of foot-dragging, implying it was the US.

Germany's foreign minister was also heading to the region for talks with Israeli and Palestinian leaders. Turkey's foreign minister and a delegation of Arab League ministers are visiting Gaza today.

Hamas, an offshoot of the region-wide Muslim Brotherhood, is negotiating from a stronger position than four years ago, when Israel launched a three-week war on the militants in Gaza.

At that time, Hamas was internationally isolated; now, the Muslim Brotherhood is in power in Egypt and Tunisia, and Hamas is also getting political support from Qatar and Turkey.

US president Barack Obama and other Western leaders have blamed Hamas for the latest outbreak of fighting, saying Israel has a right to defend itself against rocket attacks. However, they have also warned Israel against sending ground troops into Gaza, a move that would probably lead to a sharp increase in the Gaza death toll.

Over the years, Israeli governments have struggled to come up with an effective policy towards Hamas, which is deeply rooted in Gaza, a densely-populated territory of 1.6 million.

Hamas has fired more than 1,000 rockets at Israel since the start of the latest offensive on Wednesday, kicked off by Israel's assassination of the Hamas military chief.

Of the 95 rockets fired Monday, 29 of them intercepted by Israel's US-financed Iron Dome anti-missile battery, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. Rockets landed in open areas of the southern cities of Beersheba, Ashdod and Ashkelon, and caused damage in a number of areas, including an empty school building in Ashkelon.



BACKGROUND TO GAZA CONFLICT

With little notice, Israel has launched a blistering air offensive against the Gaza Strip's ruling Hamas militant group. Here is a look at why the violence erupted, the goals of the warring sides and how it may end.

LIGHTNING STRIKE

Israel opened its offensive with a surprise air strike on November 14 that killed the shadowy leader of Hamas' military wing.

Since then it has carried out hundreds of air strikes in what it says is a systematic campaign to halt years of rocket attacks launched from Gaza. While Israel claims to have inflicted heavy damage, dozens of rockets have continued to fly out of Gaza each day.

Israel launched the operation in response to days of rocket attacks out of Gaza, highlighted by a rare missile strike on an Israeli military vehicle that wounded four soldiers. But the operation was actually years in the making.

Since a previous Israeli offensive four years ago, Hamas has restocked its arsenal with more sophisticated and powerful weapons smuggled in from Egypt through underground tunnels.

After a lull following Israel's previous offensive, rocket fire has steadily climbed the past two years. The Israeli military says more than 700 rockets were launched into Israel this year before it launched the offensive last week. In this environment, Israeli officials have said it was only a matter of time before a new round of fighting broke out.

THE BATTLEFIELD

Hamas seized control of Gaza, a densely populated strip of land sandwiched between southern Israel and Egypt's Sinai desert, five years ago from the rival Fatah movement of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Hamas, a militant group sworn to Israel's destruction, has developed is rocket arsenal to the point where nearly half of Israel's population is in range.

WHY FIRE ROCKETS?

Palestinian militants, led by Hamas, say the rocket fire is a legitimate response to continued Israeli attacks. They also claim they are resisting Israeli occupation of the territory. Israel withdrew from Gaza in 2005, ending a 38-year military occupation. But it has maintained a blockade of the territory in a step it says is needed to prevent arms smuggling.

In the murky world of Gaza politics, the attacks also stem from internal rivalries between groups eager to prove their militant credentials. Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu says no country would tolerate repeated missile attacks on its civilians.

RISKY BUSINESS

Prolonged fighting carries great risks for both sides. As Israel presses forward, the number of Palestinian civilian casualties is likely to rise - a scenario that could quickly turn international opinion against it. Israel's previous offensive left hundreds of civilians dead, drawing international condemnation and war crimes accusations. By continuing to fire rockets, Hamas raises the risk of tougher Israeli attacks, including a possible ground offensive. Well aware of these risks, both sides are working through mediators to arrange a cease-fire.

TERMS OF THE DEAL

Israel wants a halt to the rocket attacks and an end to arms smuggling into Gaza, most likely in a deal that is guaranteed by Egypt or other international parties. Hamas wants a halt to Israeli assassinations of its leaders and a lifting of the Israeli blockade.

While gaps remain wide, both sides have strong interests in a deal. Bringing quiet to Israel's embattled south will make Mr Netanyahu a national hero, weeks before parliamentary elections. Hamas, branded a terrorist group by Israel and the West, has seen its influence grow as the Arab Spring brings Islamists to power across the region.

A ceasefire, particularly an arrangement guaranteed with international partners, would cement Hamas' control of Gaza and give it more of the international recognition it covets so much.

BY THE NUMBERS

More than 100 Palestinians, half of them civilians, have been killed, according to Palestinian medical officials. Three Israeli civilians have died from rocket fire.

Israel has attacked more than 1,350 targets in the current offensive, according to the Israeli army. Hamas and smaller armed groups have responded with nearly 600 rockets, the army says.

Israel says its new "Iron Dome" rocket-defence system has shot down more than 300 incoming projectiles.

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