- US special envoy arrives in Israel
- Attacks near Israeli airport
- Rocket crashes near Austrian embassy
- Rockets fired at Israel from Syria
Jerusalem: The Israeli army destroyed the Al Jala building in Gaza on Saturday. The building housed the offices of international news organizations and news channels. Nevertheless, the Israeli military has accused Hamas militants of using the building for anti-Israel activities and human shields. Outraged, Hamas has threatened to retaliate. After that, Hamas stepped up its rocket attacks on Israel.
On Friday, the international media had claimed that a ceasefire would be reached between Israel and Hamas in a few hours. The conflict was to end by Sunday, reportedly. However, the conflict between Israel and Gaza’s Hamas and Islamic Jihad has sharply escalated in the last 24 hours. More than 400 rockets and missiles were fired from the Gaza Strip. In the past six days, at least 2,300 rockets were fired at Israel from the Gaza Strip. Also, the Israeli military has said three rockets that were fired from Syria crashed into the Golan Heights region.
Hamas has alleged that ten members of a family were killed in Israeli airstrikes in Gaza. Also, Gaza’s Hamas-controlled health ministry claims the dead include small children as well. The Israeli military did not provide details of the incident. Furthermore, Hamas’s al-Qassam Brigades fired rockets at an airport in the Israeli city of Beersheba. Although the attack did not cause much damage to the airport, a house had collapsed, the Israeli army said.
Over 100 rockets hit Tel Aviv and Beersheba since Saturday morning. A rocket crashed near the Austrian embassy in Ramat Gan, Tel Aviv. A few hours before that, Austrian Prime Minister Sebastian Karz had hoisted the Israeli flag on his office and announced that his country supported Israel in the conflict. Hamas then launched a rocket attack on the Austrian embassy in a warning to countries supporting Israel.
Israel also destroyed the Al Jala building in Gaza. An hour before the attack, the Israeli army had called the international news agency, instructing it to evacuate the building. In addition, the military also called the owner of the building a few minutes before the strike to make sure the building was vacated. Only then did Israeli planes strike the Al Jala building. “Hamas terrorists were using the building as a human shield. The building had to destroyed to corner Hamas,” the Israeli army said. The move has prompted a backlash on Israel since it was made on a building that housed international news agencies.
Meanwhile, US Special Envoy Hady Amr arrived in Tel Aviv on Saturday to discuss the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. The US special envoy is expected to hold talks with Israel, Palestine, and the United Nations leaders.