Israeli airstrikes hit 5 mosques, football stadium in Gaza

Israeli airstrikes hit 5 mosques, football stadium in Gaza
Tue Jul 22, 2014 12:27:25

Israel has bombed five mosques, a sports stadium and the home of the late Hamas military chief across the Gaza Strip, a Gaza police official says.

Airstrikes set off huge explosions that turned the night sky over Gaza City orange in early hours of Tuesday. The sound of the blasts mixed with the thud of shelling, often just seconds apart, and the predawn call to prayer from mosque loudspeakers.

The intense Israeli strikes came as UN chief Ban Ki-moon and US Secretary of State John Kerry met in Cairo to launch the highest-level push yet to end two weeks of Israeli offensive that has claimed at least 570 Palestinian lives.

The UN has said a majority of the Palestinians killed were civilians, among them dozens of children. In Israel, the army said two more soldiers were killed in clashes with Hamas fighters, bringing the number of troops killed since July 8 to 27. Two Israeli civilians have also been killed.

Early Tuesday, Israeli aircraft hit more than 70 targets in the Gaza Strip, including the home of the late leader of Hamas' military wing, five mosques and a football stadium, Gaza police spokesman Ayman Batniji said.

Batniji said tank shells damaged several houses along the eastern border of the territory and that Israeli navy shells fired from the Mediterranean burned at least 19 fishing boats.

BA/BA

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