Following days of strikes and counterattacks between Israeli military forces and Qassam brigades in Gaza, the Palestinian organization has announced its desire for a truce. The conditional ceasefire would be brokered by Egypt and would put an end to the violence, which broke months of relative calm along the disputed Israel-Gaza border, Ma’an News Agency reports.
Palestinian groups responsible for the rocket attacks claim that their barrages were in response to Israeli air strikes over the weekend in Gaza, which killed and injured several Palestinians and caused significant property damage to civilian areas.
Reports of the number of Qassam rockets fired from Gaza during the past three days range to as many as 100. No Israelis were killed by the rockets and only one building was confirmed to have been struck. Eight Israelis were treated for shock, but were otherwise unharmed, reports AFP.
The damage and casualty toll for Palestinians in Gaza is considerably higher. A 14-year-old boy was killed and his father seriously wounded by Israeli airstrikes on a farm outside of Gaza City on Wednesday, reports the BBC.
Eight Palestinians have been killed by Israeli strikes since Monday with only one individual, Ghalib Armilat, confirmed to have been involved with Qassam rocket launches. The youngest casualty, 2-year old Hadeel Haddad, was among the first killed in the three days of bombardment, according to the Palestine News Network. Israel claims that she was killed by a misfired Qassam rocket but sources on the scene in Gaza credit Israeli gunships for the explosion.
Two Palestinian boys, aged 13 and 14, were killed by an Israeli airstrike on Tuesday night after a Cairo-brokered ceasefire fell through. Recognizing that they could not long endure such attacks from the Israeli military authorities in Gaza called for an immediate return to the negotiating table.