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Middle East

Israeli attacks on Gaza target densely populated civilian areas

media Palestinians carry the dead body of a child from under the rubble of a … Reuters/Ahmed Zakot

As the Gaza conflict moved into its fifth day yesterday, airstrikes across the coastal enclave hit residential areas. The death toll spiked to the bloodiest day since the attack on Gaza began on Wednesday. At the same time, press freedom groups worldwide expressed outrage at the targeting of journalists following three separate attacks on media buildings. The Israeli Defence Force claim that they targeted media and officials linked to Gaza’s Hamas government.

Emergency services and local people rushed to pull bodies from the rubble of what was previously a three story building on Sunday evening.

Dossier: Gaza 2009

It was reportedly the home of Hamas official Jamal Al-Dalou before being targeted by Israeli forces.

At least six of those who were killed in the blast were women and children.

One of Al-Dalou’s neighbours, speaking anonymously, expressed his disbelief at the attack.

“I don’t know why. But there is no humanity in the Israelis [sic]. That is all.”

The airstrike is the deadliest attack on a single family since the Gaza crisis began on Wednesday.

Audio report 19/11/2012 - by Ruth Michaelson Listen

As efforts intensified to pull the final two bodies from the rubble, residents of another house less than 200 metres away shouted to the crowd that they had received a message from Israeli forces telling them that their house would also be struck.

The crowd fled, but the attack never came.

Israeli airstrikes, naval and tank shelling pounded Gaza, targeting the densely populated areas of Al-Nuseirat and Jabaliya refugee camps, as well as close to the Rafah crossing and several districts within Gaza City itself.

Israeli military chief Benny Gantz instructed forces on Sunday to increase attacks on what he termed “terror targets” in Gaza.

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