As in the two previous â€˜temporary trucesâ€™ since the Israeli assault on Gaza began July 8th, Israeli forces stepped up their attacks on Palestinian civilians in the hours leading up to the time of the scheduled ceasefire. On Saturday morning, as the 7 am â€˜temporary ceasefireâ€™ start time was approaching, an Israeli airstrike hit a three-story home housing a number of families who had fled from their homes destroyed in Khuzaâ€™a, on Thursday. Those killed include 16 members of the al-Najjar family, according to the Ministry of Health.
Previously, the IMEMC had reported the deaths of six family members (see below), but as medics continue to pull bodies from the rubble, the death toll in the airstrike has increased to 19, mainy from the al-Najjar family.
If verified, this would made the al-Najjar family massacre the second-worst in this current Israeli aggression â€“ the worst being the attack on the Abu Jameâ€™ family in Khan Younis, on Sunday, July 20th, in which 25 members of the family were killed â€“ 15 of whom were small children.
See related: People Fleeing Gaza by Whatever Means Available
Medics have identified the bodies of
Mutaz Hussein al-Najjar, 6.
Majed Sameer Al-Najjar, 19
Ghalia Mohammed al-Najjar, 56
Ahmad Khaled al-Najjar,14
Eman Salah al-Najjar, 20
Ulfat Hussein al-Najjar, 4
Sumayya Harb al-Najjar, 50
Kifah Samir al-Najjar 23
Rawan Khaled al-Najjar, 17
Husam Hussein al-Najjar, 7
Samir Hussein al-Najjar, 2
Eman Hasan ar-Raqeeb, Khan Younis.
Khalil al-Najjar, 59, Khan Younis.
Jona al-Najjar, Khan Younis.
Ekhlas al-Najjar, Khan Younis.
Amna al-Najjar, Khan Younis.
Ikhlas Sameer Abu Shahla, 30
Amira Hammoudeh Abu Shahla, 1
Islam Hammoudeh Abu Shahla, 4
Bara’ Mahmoud al-Raqeeb, 11
Riham Fayez al-Breem, 19
An additional two bodies still await identification.
The ages and names of the victims are still being verified, but pictures from the hospital show several small children who appear to be between the ages of five and ten, whose bodies were recovered from the rubble. The bodies were badly mutilated from the bomb. Some sources have reported that 11 of those killed are children under age 10.
The bomb was dropped from a US-made F16 aircraft, which targeted the crowded three story building with apparently no warning whatsoever.
In addition to this incident, another Palestinian killed in an Israeli airstrike Saturday morning has been identified as:
He was targeted by an Israeli missile which hit his car while he was returning to his home al Al-Shuhada street in Gaza City. Medical sources report that his body was completely burnt when it arrived at Shifa hospital.
Just before the truce was to take effect, the Palestinian Ministry of Health reports that five bodies were brought in to Shifa Hospital after an airstrike in the central District of Gaza. Two were identified as:
Arafat Abu Oweily, Central District.
Abdul-Rahman Ouda at-Tilbani, Central District.
In a separate incident around the same time in southern Gaza, two people were killed:
Nidal Ahmad ‘Issa Abu al-‘Asal, 27, Rafah.
Salim Salaam Abu ath-Thoum, 87, Rafah.
Also Saturday morning, as the time of the â€˜temporary truceâ€™ approached, Palestinian resistance fighters clashed with Israeli soldiers at the northern border of the Gaza Strip. 3 Palestinians were reported injured. The Israeli military spokesperson confirmed that two Israeli soldiers were injured in these clashes, including a sergeant in the engineering division. Three soldiers were reported to be critically wounded, and over 20 others moderately or lightly wounded. The Israeli military admitted the death of 36-year-old soldier Ya’er Ashkenazi.
Palestinian medical sources have reported that at least sixteen Palestinians have been killed, and dozens have been injured, some seriously, after the Israeli army continued to deliberately target civilian homes and structures in the Gaza Strip in the early morning hours on Saturday.
The homes were hit in different parts of Gaza, mainly Sheikh Radwan area.
The slain Palestinians have been identified as:
1. Husam Abul-Ghani Yassin, 15, Gaza.
2. Ismael Abdul-Qader al-Kojok, 53, Gaza.
3. Mohammad Hosni as-Saqqa, 20, Gaza.
4. Islam Ibrahim an-Naji, 19. Gaza.
5. Mohammad Matar a-Abadla, 32, Gaza.
6. Yorsa Salem Hasan al-Breem, 65, Gaza.
7. Mohammad Ahmad Abu Wadia, 19, Gaza.
8. Hani Adel Abu Hassanen, 24, Gaza.
In addition, a Palestinian man was also killed, and several others were injured, when the army fired a missile into a home in Zawayda area, in Deir al-Balah, in central Gaza. His body was severely mutilated but was later on identified as:
9. Abdullah â€˜Ayesh Salam Ermeilat, 39, Deir al-Balah.
Dozens of Palestinians, including children, infants and elderly have been injured in the ongoing Israeli bombardment, some suffering serious injuries.
Also,at least seven Palestinians from the al-Najjar family have been killed when an Israeli missile struck a residential building of a Palestinian family that was also hosting around 50 Palestinians from families that fled the Israeli bombardment of their homes in Khuzaâ€™a, in Khan Younis in the southern part of the Gaza Strip.
Around twenty Palestinians, including four children and two elderly, have been injured in the attack.
The Ministry of Health in Gaza said that 883 Palestinians, including entire families, have been killed, and at least 5840 have been injured since July 8, until dawn hours of Saturday July 25.