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Palestinian Report: Israel and Hamas Reach Cease-fire; Israeli Army Lifts Restrictions

Palestinian official says an Egyptian-mediated cease-fire agreement began Monday 4:30 A.M. ■ Nearly 700 rockets launched from Gaza and four Israelis killed in two days of hostilities ■ Israel strikes hundreds of targets in Strip, 23 Palestinians reported dead ■ Israel kills Hamas moneyman in first targeted hit since 2014

Remains of a building in Gaza City after it was hit during Israeli air strikes, Gaza Strip, May 5, 2019.
AFP

>> Update: Israel, Gaza cease hostilities; Netanyahu says campaign not over

Palestinian officials said an Egyptian-mediated ceasefire agreement was reached with Israel on Monday to end the recent surge of violence in the Gaza Strip and southern Israel. "The ceasefire understanding will begin Monday 4:30 A.M." a Palestinian official told Reuters. At 7:00 A.M., the Israeli army announced all restrictions for residents of the south were lifted, and the Education Ministry said schools will open as usual.

In two days of fighting, more than 600 rockets were launched at Israel, while the Israeli army struck hundreds of targets in the Strip. Four Israelis were killed and four were wounded as rockets fell on the south of Israel. 23 Palestinians, including two pregnant women and two infants, were killed, as Israeli struck hundreds of targets in Gaza.

A Hamas political source has told Haaretz that the group decided to take serious steps against Israel due to the fact that the Israeli government has been slow in implementing understandings reached between the two parties.

4:41 P.M. Palestinian leaders give Israel a week to fulfill Gaza cease-fire commitments

The leaders of Palestinian factions said Monday that they would give Israel a week to carry out its cease-fire commitments following a violent weekend that ended late Sunday with an agreement.

9:30 A.M. MK Bezalel Smotrich calls for killing one Palestinian for every rocket launched from Gaza

Justice portfolio hopeful Bezalel Smotrich wrote on twitter: "Tactically speaking, the round in Gaza should have ended with 700 dead terrorists (one for every rocket) and with massive physical damage to Hamas - so that it would take them years to recover. We can't afford having a million and a half citizens in shelters every few weeks."

9:02 A.M. Projectile tally: 690 rockets launched in latest round of aggression, out of which Iron Dome intercepted 240

8:21 A.M. Likud MK Gideon Sa'ar says ceasefire is no achievement for Israel 

>> Mortars, rockets and drones: A look at Hamas' arsenal >> Timing is Everything: Hamas twists Israel's arm right before the Eurovision and Independence Day >> For many Gazans, if flare-up with Israel brings relief – so be it

Haaretz Weekly Ep. 26Haaretz

Gideon Sa'ar, a lawmaker on Netanyahu's Likud party and a former political rival of the prime minister, criticized the Hamas-Israel ceasefire, tweeting: "Timed intervals between rounds of violence directed at Israel and its citizens are getting shorter, while Gaza's terror organizations are getting stronger. The round of fighting has been delayed rather than prevented."

8:05 A.M. Leader of Israel's opposition Benny Gantz criticizes ceasefire agreement

Former chief of staff Benny Gantz said military deterrence with Hamas has been lost, and that the recent escalation in violence ended in "another surrender to the blackmail of Hamas and terrorist organizations."

"All the government did, once again, is lay the next round of fighting at our door," said Gantz. "We expect that if violence is renewed, the response will be severe. And that if quiet remains, it will be used for meaningful diplomatic initiatives that will bring the return of missing persons and fallen soldiers and will ensure long-term stability." 

7 A.M. Israeli army says safety restrictions imposed communities in the south are removed

4:35 A.M. Palestinian official and Hamas TV station say cease-fire agreement reached with Israel

According to Gaza's news agency, Israel will be obligated to implement previous understandings reached between the two parties. The cease-fire will be mutual and both parties commit to its keeping.

The fishing zone for Gazans will be re-established at 12 nautical miles and humanitarian organizations will be allowed to provide aid to Gazan families affected by recent Israeli strikes, the news agency reported.  

3:25 P.M. U.S. President Donald Trump takes to Twitter to express his support for Israel

"Once again, Israel faces a barrage of deadly rocket attacks by terrorist groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad. We support Israel 100% in its defense of its citizens," Trump wrote on Twitter.

Site of the rocket explosion in Be'er Sheva

11:55 P.M. Hamas source says coming hours are crucial to achieve calm

Negotiation talks in Cairo are serious and coming hours are crucial to achieve calm, a Hamas source told Al Jazeera.

11:38 P.M. Hamas source says great efforts have been made to restore quiet 

A Hamas source says great efforts have been made in recent hours to achieve calm. The decision is in Israel's hands, the source told Al-Miyadin television channel.   

11:32 P.M. UN, Qatar and Egypt give Israel cease-fire proposal 

The United Nations, Qatar and Egypt have offered Israel a proposal for a cease-fire, diplomatic sources say.

11:05 P.M. Israeli army strikes the office of Hamas' interior minister  

10:44 P.M. Authorities in Gaza say another Palestinian has died

The Palestinian death toll since Saturday stands at 23, according to the Gaza Health Ministry, which reports that another Palestinian, a 34-year-old man, has died from an Israeli strike.

10:38 P.M. Military says 320 targets have been struck in Gaza

The military says it has recently struck another 40 targets belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad throughout Gaza, with a total of 320 targets having been struck. 

10:02 P.M. Joint statement by several U.S. ambassadors expresses support for Israel

Several American ambassadors have expressed support for Israel in a joint statement. "Enough is enough!" read the statement, signed by U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, the U.S. special envoy for combating anti-Semitism, Elan Carr, and the American ambassadors to the EU, France, Germany, Portugal, and Switzerland. "The sole aim of these terrorists is to kill, maim and terrorize citizens of Israel. These actions by Hamas and Islamic Jihad are simply unconscionable. No other nation on Earth would tolerate this . . . We affirm Israel's right to defend itself and urge all nations to call these actions out for what they are - terrorism pure and simple."

9:46 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry says 12-year-old Palestinian killed in Israeli strike

Authorities in Gaza say a 12-year-old boy was killed in an Israeli strike that also killed four others, and that a 37-year-old was killed in a strike in Rafah, bringing the total Palestinian death toll since Saturday to 21.

9:42 P.M. Two Israeli soldiers wounded by mortar fired from Gaza

Two Israeli soldiers were wounded, one lightly and one moderately, from a mortar launched at Israel from the Strip.

9:40 P.M. Israel strikes Hamas building that concealed terror tunnel 

The Israeli army said that Israeli jets struck a seven-story Hamas building that concealed an attack tunnel in Gaza City. 

According to the Israeli army, Hamas took over the building in 2010. It is located near a school, at the heart of a civilian neighborhood. 

9:35 P.M. Hamas leader in Gaza says range of rocket fire grew 'because we want Israel to implement understandings' 

Hamas leader in Gaza Ismail Haniyeh said that the reason the group was extending the range of missiles fired into Israel and the harsher responses by Palestinian factions "are not because we want to head into a new war" but because Hamas wishes to "obligate Israel to implement understandings" reached with the mediation of Egypt. 

9:30 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry says another Palestinian killed in Israeli strike

The Gaza Health Ministry says a fourth person was killed in an Israeli airstrike this evening, bringing the total Palestinian death toll since Saturday to 20. 

9:10 P.M. Islamic Jihad says no ceasefire talks, Gaza media outlets say groups have told Egypt they plan to fire on Tel Aviv 

A spokesman for Islamic Jihad  says that there are no talks and negotiations toward ending the current round of hostilities. Meanwhile, media outlets in Gaza are reporting that Gaza factions have told Egypt they intend to attack Tel Aviv and other parts of central Israel tonight.

8:52 P.M. Ramat Gan opens public shelters

The city of Ramat Gan, north of Tel Aviv, has decided to open its public shelters. 

8:50 P.M. Schools in southern Israel to remain closed Monday

The Home Front Command has instructed schools to remain closed on Monday in several parts of southern Israel. In these areas, public gatherings taking place outside will be prohibited, while no events with over 300 people will be allowed inside. 

8:43 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry reports another Palestinian killed in strikes

Gaza authorities report another Palestinian was killed in recent Israeli strikes, bringing the total Palestinian death toll since Saturday to 19. 

8:38 P.M. Israel halts entry of fuel into Gaza through crossing

Israel has stopped the entry of fuel transports into Gaza after projectiles fell near trucks, one of which was still full. Seventeen fuel trucks holding 650,000 liters of fuel entered Gaza earlier today. While Israel has shut the Kerem Shalom crossing, Egypt opened the Rafah crossing yesterday, and goods have been entering Gaza through that crossing. 

8:29 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry says two more Palestinians killed by Israeli strikes

Authorities in Gaza say two more Palestinians, including an infant, have been killed by Israeli strikes, bringing the Palestinian death toll since Saturday to 18.

8:16 P.M. Ashdod man succumbs to wounds

An Ashdod man has succumbed to wounds sustained by rocket shrapnel, bringing the Israeli death toll since Saturday to four

8:14 Barzilai Hospital says 12 Israelis still hospitalized

Barzilai Hospital in southern Israel say 12 people remain hospitalized: three wounded seriously, one moderately, seven lightly, and one being treated for shock. 

8:10 P.M. Rocket falls in stadium in Kiryat Malachi

The city of Kiryat Malachi says a rocket fired from Gaza has fallen inside the city's stadium and that a number of rocket fragments have been found in the city.

8:07 P.M. Israel strikes Gaza terrorist in northern Strip 

The Israeli army said that an Israeli jet struck a terroist in northern Gaza.

7:44 P.M. Natural gas flow halted

Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz ordered on Sunday a temporary halt to the natural gas pumping from the Tamar offshore gas field, citing "security reasons."

The natural gas is pumped through a rig situated some 20 kilometers from the coast of Ashkelon in Israel's south, using only one pipe. Authorities have admitted the rig was targeted in the past.

7:32 P.M. Security cabinet consultation meeting ends after five hours: Ministers instruct military to continue Gaza strikes

The security cabinet has ended its meeting after five hours. Ministers have instructed the military to continue strikes in Gaza "and to prepare for a continuation." A statement issued at the end of the meeting said that "the paramount consideration is the security of the state and its residents."

7:29 P.M. Israeli critically wounded in Ashdod

A 35-year-old Israeli man has been critically wounded by rocket shrapnel in Ashdod, emergency services say.

7:20 P.M. City of Sderot says rocket has struck building but did not explode, none wounded

7:17 P.M. Large rocket barrage from Gaza as sirens wail in Ashdod, Ashkelon, and border communities

7:05 P.M. Greenblatt says rockets are among reasons peace plan is focused on Israeli security

Jason Greenblatt, Washington's special envoy to the Middle East, weighs in on Twitter, writing: "Hamas & PIJ have fired over FIVE HUNDRED rockets @ #Israel, killing 3 Israelis/wounding many. When people ask why we’re focused on Israel’s security in our plan, this is 1 very important reason. Peace can only be built on truth & reality. Many try to pretend this away; we won’t."

7:03 P.M. Gaza authorities say death toll rises to 16

Authorities in Gaza say a 51-year-old man was killed in a strike on the city of Rafah, bringing the Palestinian death toll since Saturday to 16.

6:47 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry: Death toll at 15 after three more Palestinians, including pregnant woman, killed

Authorities in Gaza say that with the deaths of three more people, including a pregnant woman, the death toll in Gaza since Saturday stands at 15.

6:45 P.M. Hamas cyber attack thwarted over weekend, military says

The military says that along with the Shin Bet, it thwarted a Hamas cyber attack over the weekend. 

6:44 P.M. Military says aircraft have struck additional 'terrorist operatives'

6:28 P.M. European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini speaks is defense of Israel

European Union foregin policy chief Federica Mogherini released a statement Sunday in which she expressed the EU's support of Israel in light of the ongoing rocket fire aimed at the country. "The Eu reiterates its fundemental commitment to the security of Israel," the statement read. 

Mogherini also added that "indiscriminate rocket attacks from Palestinian militants in Gaza must stop immediately."

6:21 P.M. Gaza authorities report Palestinian killed in Rafah, bringing Palestinian death toll to 12

5:55 Military says it struck terrorist cell in southern Gaza

5:41 Public security minister meets with U.S. delegation

Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan has met with U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, along with American ambassadors to European countries, telling them that "the current situation in Gaza is proof of the faillure of the approach calling for Israeli retreat."

5:40 P.M. Two Palestinians reported killed by Israeli strike in Gaza

Two Palestinians, aged 30 and 27, have been killed in an Israeli strike, the Gaza Health Ministry reports. 

5:22 P.M. Irish foreign minister urges restraint

Irish Tánaiste and Foreign Minister Simon Coveney has issued a statement in which he condemns rocket fire for Gaza and calls for "an end to indiscriminate attacks on civilians and for restraint in terms of the Israeli response, which has already led to several deaths in Gaza."

5:20 P.M. Barzilai Hospital: 131 Israeli casualties since Saturday

Barzilai Hospital, near Ashkelon, says it has seen 131 Israeli casualties over the past 24 hours: three dead, three seriously wounded, three moderately wounded, 60 lightly wounded, and 62 treated for shock. 

5:16 P.M. Military announces strikes on Hamas' public security headquarters

The military says aircraft have begun striking the building housing Hamas' public security apparatus in Gaza.

5:15 P.M. UN Mideast envoy condemns rocket fire

Nickolay Mladenov, the United Nations special envoy for the Middle East, has condemned the rocket fire on Twitter, writing: "I condemn the continuing launching of rockets from #Gaza. Enough #Palestinian and #Israeli lives have been lost, people injured, houses damaged and destroyed! It is time to de-escalate and return to the understandings of the past few months before it is too late. #UN"

5:06 P.M. Military: 600 rockets fired at Israel since Saturday, 150 intercepted

Military spokesman Ronen Manelis says that since Saturday, 600 rockets and mortars were fired toward Israel, 510 of which crossed the Israel-Gaza border. One hundred and fifty rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system, he said.

Many of the rockets landed in open areas, the army spokesman noted, but over 35 rockets landed in populated areas. Manelis said that the army detected cases in which Israelis were not following the Home Front Command's instructions, and asked that they act catiously to avoid further fatalities.

5:02 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry names dead Palestinians

The Gaza Health Ministry has named the Palestinians killed since Saturday as Imad Muhammad Nasir, 22; Saba Mahmoud Abu Ar'ar, a year and a half, her aunt, Falestine Saleh Abu A'rar and the unborn fetus the latter was carrying; Khaled Mohammad Abu Qliq, 25; Mahmoud Subhi Isa, 26; andFawzi Abrd El-Hamid Bwadi, 24.  Israel's army attributed the death of the pregnant woman and her infant niece to a Hamas explosive, refuting Palestinian claims that they were killed by Israeli airstrikes. 

Also killed were two members of Islamic Jihad's military wing, named as Bilal Mohammed al-Banna, 28, and Abdullah Abu el-Atta, 21, as well as Hamed Ahmed Abed Khudari, a man in charge of large-scale money transfers from Iran to Gaza

5:00 P.M. Israeli army spokesman says extensive strikes in Gaza ongoing; one Israeli fatality caused by direct hit from anti-tank missile

Israeli army spokesman Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis said that the military was continuing to strike in Gaza, through the air and by use of tanks. Manelis noted that one of the Israeli fatalities from earlier today was caused by a direct hit from an anti-tank missile that had been fired from Gaza. 

"We know that factions in Gaza are trying to fire [at Israel] directly and we decided to bolster forces close to the Gaza border."

4:38 P.M. Netanya opening public shelters

The city of Netanya in central Israel, some 30 kilometers north of Tel Aviv, is opening its public shelters to prepare for potential rocket fire. 

4:28 P.M. Hundreds at funeral of Ashkelon rocket victim

Hundreds of people are participating in the funeral of Moshe Agadi, killed by a rocket at his home last night. Authorities had instructed that no more than 300 people participate, but several hundred arrives and some were asked to leave. 

4:22 P.M. Military says it has struck Gaza over 210 times today; senior air force commander says over 600 projectiles fired at Israel since Saturday 

The military says it has struck targets in Gaza over 210 times today, while a senior air force commander says over 600 projectiles have been fired at Israel since Saturday.

4:00 P.M. Military says aircraft have struck a 'terrorist operative' in southern Gaza 

3:42 P.M. Islamic Jihad says two members of military wing killed

Islamic Jihad has announced that two members of its military wing have been killed east of Gaza. They have been named as Bilal Mohammed al-Banna, 28, and Abdullah Abu el-Atta, 21.

3:32 P.M. Man killed by rocket in Ashkelon identified as 50-year-old resident of Bedouin community

A man killed by a rocket in Ashkelon this afternoon has been named as 
Zaed al-Hamamda, 50, a resident of a Bedouin community east of Segev Shalom.

3:25 P.M. Israel kills Gazan in charge of Iranian fund transfers to terror organizations in the Strip, IDF says

The military says it has killed Hamed Ahmed Abed Khudari, a man in charge of large-scale money transfers from Iran to Gaza, marking the first targeted killing in Gaza since the escalation in violence that began on Saturday. Palestinians say it is the first such action since 2014. 

Hamas later confirmed the man was a senior member of the organization, giving no further details on his activity.

3:24 P.M. Israel has allowed 650,000 liters of fuel into Gaza today

Israel has allowed 17 fuel trucks into Gaza today, with 650,000 liters of fuel passing through the Kerem Shalom crossing. Authorities decided to close the crossing a short time ago, after a mortar fell nearby. Egypt has opened the Rafah crossing to allow goods into Gaza.

3:15 P.M. The security cabinet instructs IDF to intensify strikes

An Israeli security official said the Israel Defense Forces were told to intensify strikes on Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in the Strip and to bolster forces along the border as deliberations continue.

3:04 P.M. Gaza Health Ministry: Palestinian dead, three wounded in Israeli attack in central Gaza

3:02 P.M. Barzilai Hospital: 115 Israeli casualties over past day

Barzilai Hospital, near Ashkelon, says it has seen 115 Israeli casualties over the past 24 hours: three dead, three seriously wounded, one moderately wounded, 53 lightly wounded, and 55 treated for shock. Twenty-eight are in the emergency room and nine are hospitalized.

2:50 P.M. Security Cabinet convenes in Jerusalem

2:35 P.M. Factory workers killed in Ashkelon did not reach shelter in time

The factory has a shelter, yet the two workers killed, and a third who was seriously injured, did not reach it in time. 

A worker at the factory told Haaretz that he tried to get one of the workers who was killed to the shelter, but he chose to stay outside. "I told him, come with me, run to the shelter and he said no, not necessary."

According to another worker at the factory, the two workers who were killed were truck drivers for the factory.

2:28 P.M. Israeli army closes roads near border after anti-tank missile fired at car

The Israeli army and Israel Police have closed off exposed roads near the Gaza border, after an anti-tank missile was fired at and missed a car.

2:22 P.M. Two Israelis confirmed dead after rocket hits southern Israel

Two of the Israelis critically wounded after a rocket hit the southern city of Ashkelon died of their wounds, raising the toll to three in the current round of aggression with Gaza.

2:09 P.M. Following last barrage of rocket fire: Three Israelis critically wounded, two seriously wounded

Four people were wounded in Ashkelon - Two critically wounded and two in serious condition.

One person was critically wounded by a direct rocket strike to his car near Kibbutz Erez.

2:02 P.M. Rocket explodes on road near entrance to Be'er Sheva

No casualties reported.

2:02 P.M. Anti-tank missile fired at civilian jeep near Gaza border community

No casualties reported.

1:51 P.M. Israeli army says they have attacked 260 targets in Gaza

Israel Defense Force spokesperson said that since the beginning of the escalation, Israel has struck 260 targets in Gaza.

According to the statement, Israel has attacked terror targets including a tunnel, underground weapons facilities, military compounds and a number of launch sites throughout the Strip. 

The army said that several of the targets were nested within civilian enclaves. 

The army continues its assault.

1:51 P.M. One man critically wounded after a direct rocket hit to his car

Paramedics are currently treating a 50-year-old man near Kibbutz Erez, who was critically wounded when a rocket landed a direct hit on his car.

The paramedic who arrived at the scene said, "while on our way to Ashkelon, we came across a car that was on fire. We stopped at the side of the rode and gave first aid to the driver who was critically wounded as a result of a direct rocket hit." 

1:44 P.M. Two Palestinians killed in Israeli airstrike in Gaza

Gaza Health Ministry said that two Palestinians were killed in an Israeli airstrike in eastern Gaza.

1:37 P.M. Rehovot, in central Israel, opens bombshelters

1:28 P.M. Rocket explodes in Be'er Sheva

A house in Be'er Sheva took a direct hit from a rocket, causing massive damage.

Police and first responders have arrived at the scene, there are no injuries reported at this stage.

1:25 P.M. Israeli army says it struck a group of militants launching rockets from the northern Gaza Strip

1:23 P.M. Gaza factions claim rocket barrage, say it's response to impact of civilian buildings in the Strip

Israel must know continuing its aggressive policy will lead to a harsher response, Gaza war room statement says.

1:15 P.M. Two rockets explode in Ashkelon, 3 wounded

Emergency services reported that two people are critically wounded, and one person is moderately wounded by shrapnel from a direct rocket hit to a factory.

A school was damaged after another rocket exploded in its yard.

1:13 P.M. French Foreign Ministry condemns rocket fire from Gaza

The French Foreign Ministry released a statement saying, "France strongly condemns the rocket fire towards Israeli civilians from Gaza in recent days. France recognizes the right of Israel, as well as Palestinians, to live in peace, respect and security."

The statement also said that France supports the Egyptian mediation efforts. "We call on both sides to exercise restraint and remind them that the defense of civilians and preservation of humanitarianism is of prime importance."

1:04 P.M. Gaza rocket barrage fired deeper into Israel, sirens go off in Be'er Sheva, Ashdod and several other cities

12:55 P.M. Rocket explodes in Hof Ashkelon Regional Council, damaging a nearby structure. No casualties reported

12:48 P.M. Sirens blare in several Gaza border communities

11:21 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Ashkelon, Sha'ar HaNegev Regional Council and Sderot

12:12 P.M. Magen David Adom says they have treated 83 people

Magen David Adom said that in total, 83 Israelis have received medical treatment since the escalation began. One Israeli, Moshe Agadi, was killed by shrapnel after a rocket strike in Ashkelon. An 80-year-old woman was seriously wounded by shrapnel and a 50-year-old man was moderately wounded by shrapnel.

In total, of the 83 injured, 9 were wounded by shrapnel, 12 were injured while running to shelters and 62 were treated for panic attacks. 

11:59 A.M. Rocket falls near empty kindergarten in Gaza border community

No casualties or property damage reported.

11:58 A.M. Israeli army says it struck Islamic Jihad militants in a weapons warehouse in the southern Gaza Strip

11:29 A.M. Gilad Erdan calls for a return to targeted assassinations

Likud Minister Gilad Erdan, speaking at an event ahead of Israel's Independence Day, said "we must increase our reaction in Gaza until there is quiet, and to return to targeted assassinations."

11:15 A.M. Israeli Air Force strikes Gaza City

11:14 A.M. Netanyahu says he ordered continued air strikes and increased forces at the border

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he directed the Israel Defense Force to "continue their massive assault against the terror organizations in the Gaza Strip and I instructed them to boost the forces surrounding the Strip with armored corps, artillery and ground forces."

Netanyahu added that he holds Hamas responsible, not just for their actions, "but also for the actions of Islamic Jihad, and they are paying a big price for it."

The prime minister also extended his condolences to the family of Moshe Agadi, who was killed in a rocket strike overnight Saturday, and wished a speedy recovery to the wounded Israeli citizens.

11:13 A.M. Hamas political official: No practical results in Cairo talks

A Hamas political official, who is taking part in the talks with Egyptian mediators in Cairo, said that the talks are continuing without any practical results.

Until Israel implements understandings to improve the lives of Gaza's civilians, he said, there is no reason to expect a de-escalation.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson of the Popular Resistance Committee in the Strip said that all the Palestinian factions are unified in their position.

11:11 A.M. Rocket siren goes off in Sha'ar HaNegev Regional Council near the Gaza border

10:36 A.M. Hamas says it is prepared for a long campaign, promises 'many surprises'

9:50 A.M. Israeli army says it struck militant group in northern Gaza Strip and Hamas and Islamic Jihad weapons facilities

The Israeli army spokesperson said that Israeli Air Force struck a terror cell in the northern Gaza Strip and weapons facilities belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad. 

The army said that locations for weapons storage were intentionally hidden in the homes of families of Hamas and Islamic Jihad militants.

9:15 A.M. Israeli army reports 450 rockets, 220 Israeli strikes in Gaza; says it is preparing for several days of fighting

Israeli army spokesperson said over 450 rockets were launched towards Israel from Gaza, with the Iron Dome has intercepting over 150 rockets.

The Israeli Air Force has attacked over 220 targets in Gaza, and reports eight members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad dead.

It confirmed the death of the Palestinian pregnant mother and her infant niece, yet claimed that they were killed by a Hamas explosive device - and not by an Israeli strike.

The statement did not clarify whether it counted the mother and her child in the death toll.

It further said an armored corps brigade has been mobilized to the Gaza border and that Israel preparing for several days of fighting.

8:54 A.M. Central Israeli city of Rishon Letzion opens bomb shelters

The mayor of Rishon Letzion, Raz Kinstlich, ordered bomb shelters to be opened throughout the city. "We have a security situation, and as the firing radius has expanded," he explained, "I instructed the bomb shelters to open in order to up our readiness and for the safety of our residents, if needed." 

Rishon Letzion is a city in central Israel, 8 kilometers (5 miles) south of Tel Aviv.

>> Read more: Egypt is a mediator, not a partner ■ Hamas twists Israel's arm right before the Eurovision and Independence Day ■ Defense sources warned before flare-up: If we don't reach understandings, Hamas will struggle to prevent escalation

7:04 A.M. Six Palestinians killed and 47 wounded 

According to Palestinian reports, six people have been killed in Gaza since the escalation began Saturday morning. The Palestinian count includes Salah Bat Abu Arar, who was eight months pregnant when she was killed in an Israeli strike, and her fourteen month old niece, Saba Abu Arar. Palestinians report 47 wounded. 

8:57 A.M. Israel's regional coordination minister says Eurovision is not a factor in Israel's decision making

Israel's minister of regional cooperation, Tzachi Hanegbi, told army radio that the government ministers are not aware of any cease-fire negotiations. "To the contrary," Hanegbi said, "we have been updated on advancing plans based on the bank of targets."

Hanegbi referred to Eurovision 2019, which is slated to begin next week, and said that the song contest is not affected by the Israeli military concerns. "For Eurovision, which is a cultural event, this cannot be a concern," he said. "In general, for Israel doesn't have an interest in launching a [full scale] military campaign. All of this year we've made endless efforts, and even sustained domestic criticism over the fact that the goal, as presented by the political leadership, has been to come to an arrangement and understandings that will spare us casualties. But it wouldn't occur to me that in a cabinet meeting, or a security forum, that they would consider a musical event, an entertainment event."

6:41 A.M. 180 rockets fired from Gaza overnight, Israel strikes 60 terror targets in retaliation, IDF says

After 180 rockets were fired at Israel from Gaza overnight, Israel struck 60 terror targets in the Strip, according to the Israel Defense Force Spokesperson. Among the targets attacked by Israel are Hamas rocket launch sites in northern Gaza, Hamas weapons manufacturing factories, and a tunnel crossing into Israel from the Strip.

Since the escalation began, the Israeli army has identified about 430 rocket launches from Gaza. Israel has attacked over 200 targets in retaliation, and are continuing their assault. 

5:39 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Ashkelon and Kiryat Gat

After a nearly three-hour lull, rocket sirens sound in southern cities of Ashkelon and Kiryat Gat. Alarms were also activated in the communities of the Lachish, Shafir and the Yoav Regional Council. An IDF spokesperson said of the alarms are being looking into. 

5:32 A.M. Seven different locations where rockets fell identified 

Authorities identify seven different locations where rockets fell including a school and a house which killed a 60-year-old man. 

4:19 A.M. Jason Greenblatt condemns Gaza rockets 

U.S. President Donald Trump's Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt takes to Twitter, backing Israel and condemning rocket fire. 

"Hamas & PIJ have engaged in yet another deplorable act of terrorism, indiscriminately firing hundreds of rockets at Israeli civilian communities. The U.S. stands firmly in support of Israel’s right to self-defense and we call on the international community to do the same."

4:08 A.M. Palestinian media reports death of two Islamic Jihad millitants 

Two Islamic Jihad militants - Mahmoud Issa, 26, and Fawzi Bawadi, 23,- were killed by Israeli strikes near the Al-Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip.

3:59 A.M. Israeli airstrikes targets military positions in Gaza Strip

The Shehab News Agency reports Israeli airstrikes east of Khan Yunis.

2:50 A.M. Israeli killed after rocket hits his residential building in Ashkelon

A 58-year-old Israeli man identified as Moshe Agadi was killed after a rocket his home in the southern city of Ashkelon. The man was evacuated to the nearby Barzilai Hospital after being wounded by shrapnel in his chest and abdomen. 

Israeli police said the rocket hit the yard of the man's home and further damage was caused to nearby houses. Police sappers came to examine the scene incident.

2:20 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in southern communities including Sderot and Ashkelon

Alarms were activated in the southern cities of Sderot, Ashkelon and Kiryat Malakhi as well as in nearby settlements in the regions of Sha'ar HaNegev Regional Council. 

1:46 A.M. Alarms activated in Kiryat Gat, Ofakim and nearby settlements

Rocket sirens sound in southern areas of Kiryat Gat, Ofakim communities of the Yoav Regional Council and Merhavim Regional Council. 

1:43 A.M. 58 Israelis have received medical treatment, MDA reports

Magen David Adom reports 58 civilians as having received medical treatment, including 45 with anxiety since 10 A.M. on Saturday. MDA also reports ten Israelis having been injured following rocket sirens. 

Three have been injured by shrapnel including an 80-year-old woman in Kiryat Gat who was seriously wounded, suffering injuries to her face and legs. A 50-year-old man was moderately injured and a 45-year-old man in the northern Bedouin village of Laqiya was mildly injured in the leg. All three were evacuated to nearby hospitals for treatment. 

1:36 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Kiryat Gat and Yoav Regional Council 

Rocket sirens blare in the southern areas of Kiryat Gat and Yoav Regional Council. 

1:24 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Kiryat Malakhi and Beer Tuvia Regional Council

A red alert was activated in Kiryat Malakhi near Ashkelon and the Beer Tuvia Regional Council near Israel's southern coastal region. 

1:13 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Eshkol Regional Council 

Rocket sirens go off in Eshkol Regional Council near the Negev. 

1:05 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Kiryat Gat, Kiryat Malachi and Hof Ashkelon Regional Council

A red alert sirens were activated in the cities of Kiryat Gat, Kiryat Malachi and Hof Ashkelon Regional Council. The IDF says details are under review.

12:57 A.M. Rocket sirens sound in Eshkol Regional Council and Ashkelon 

Rocket sirens alarm in southern communities of Eshkol Regional Council and Ashkelon. In IDF spokesperson says details are under investigation. 

12:57 A.M. Resident of southern Bedouin town says the village underestimates alarms and must take situation more seriously 

A resident of the southern Bedouin town of Laqiya, Imad Abu Bader, told Haaretz that not all the houses in the village have shelters. "We heard an alarm, we are not such people who go to shelters, we went to the roof to see where it falls," he added. "Suddenly I heard a loud boom and saw the fall."

Abu Bader added that there is a problem of easing the alarms in his town. "We underestimate when there is an alarm and we have to take the situation seriously," he said, estimating that many residents will not stay overnight in their homes. "After the fall there were three alarms and everyone ran away, you know what will happen at night."

12:32 A.M. Courses in southern Israeli universities cancelled 

The Open University in Lachish announced that there will be no classes on its campuses in Ashdod, Kiryat Gat, Rahat and Segev Shalom in addition to the community college in Beit Yatziv in Be'er Sheva. The Achva Academic College in the Negev region has also canceled studies for Sunday.

12:28 A.M. Fire breaks out in Negev after rocket hits area 

A small fire broke out in the Merhavim Regional Council in the western Negev after a rocket fell in an open area. 

12:06 A.M. Islamic Jihad says they will surprise Israel with retaliation 

Islamic Jihad's military wing in Gaza says they will surprise Israel with retaliation for strikes on the Strip. 

Saturday 11:32 P.M. 45-year-old hit in the leg by shrapnel

A 45-year-old man was hit by a shrapnel in his leg after a rocket struck near his house. There was also damage to the resident's home. 

A MDA spokesperson said that paramedics provided medical treatment to the man. 

Saturday 11:25 P.M. Alarms sound in Gedera and Lachish Region Council

Rocket alarms sound in the central town of Gedera and the southeastern district of Lachish Region council.

Saturday 11:10 P.M. Rocket sirens sound in southern Israeli communities

Multiple rocket sirens alarm in southern cities of Be'er Sheva, Omer, Ashkelon and the Bnei Shimon Regional Council. 

Saturday 10:48 P.M. Fourth Palestinian man said killed by Israeli strikes 

A fourth Palestinian man was reported killed by Israeli strikes Saturday night. The man, identified as Khaled Abu Khalik, died in an Israeli strike on the northern Gaza Strip, Gaza's Health Ministry said. According to the ministry, four people died in Israeli strikes in Gaza on Saturday, and eight more died on Friday. 

Saturday 10:21 P.M. Israeli army has identified 250 rockets fired from Gaza

The Israeli army said that 250 rockets have been fired toward Israel since Saturday morning. According to the military's spokesperson's unit, the Iron Dome has intercepted dozens of rockets.