Twenty-nine Palestinians were killed in Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip yesterday, mainly in attacks on targets in vehicles and on motorcycles, Palestinian officials reported. The death toll in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge stands at over 2,050, while some 10,300 have been wounded as of yesterday afternoon, according to Gaza’s health ministry.
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In Israel, the condition of a 33-year-old man wounded by mortar shrapnel in Eshkol worsened from moderate to serious as Gazan militants fired 104 rockets and mortar shells at the country, mainly toward the south but reaching as far north as the Samaria Regional Council in the upper West Bank. Eighty-four rockets exploded in open areas and 11 were intercepted by the Iron Dome defense system. Damage was done to some homes in the south. In Be’er Sheva a 40-year-old man was seriously wounded after being hit by a car while seeking cover.
Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon requested cabinet permission to call up 10,000 reservists for combat and home front duty. Meanwhile, Ben-Gurion International Airport was functioning normally despite Hamas’ threats to target it. There was a large police presence at the airport, but departures and arrivals were on schedule.
Tens of thousands of Palestinians attended the funerals of the three Hamas commanders killed overnight in an Israeli strike in Rafah. In addition to the three commanders, two of them considered the most senior in the southern Gaza Strip, an Islamic Jihad operative was killed in an airstrike on southern Gaza after he left a building from which rockets were fired at Israel, the IDF said. The IDF also fired at several operatives who were about to launch rockets from cemeteries in northern Gaza. On Wednesday, rockets were fired from that location toward Ashkelon.
A Hamas website reported that the body of Hamas military chief Mohammed Deif’s daughter, Sarah, was recovered from the ruins of the building struck by Israel on Tuesday night. The bodies of Deif’s wife and infant son were retrieved earlier. Deif’s whereabouts remain unknown. Hamas has said the IDF “failed” in its attempt on his life, but there is still no concrete evidence indicating whether he is dead or alive.