Hamas' and Israel's short but confusing weekend war

Hamas' and Israel's short but confusing weekend war

Hamas' and Israel's short but confusing weekend war

Israel said its strikes were in response to Hamas and Islamic Jihad firing some 690 rockets or mortars across the border since Saturday, with air defences intercepting more than 240 of them.

"We call on the worldwide community to act swiftly in order to ease tensions that have increased due to Israel's disproportionate actions in the region", the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Air strikes directed at Hamas and extremist facilities from Israel's military in response to the barrage of rockets have killed 19 Palestinians, more than half of whom have been civilians, according to Reuters.

President Trump also urged Gaza residents to stop supporting Hamas, saying further confrontation will only bring more misery to the struggling enclave. Compared with previous rounds of violence, this one was short - just over the weekend - and casualties were lower, but it caused more confusion: In a matter of hours, Hamas and its allies from Gaza fired more than 800 rockets into Israel.

The Palestinian leadership has already said it does not accept mediation by Trump, whose evangelical Christian base is fervently pro-Israel and whose long list of actions in support of the Jewish state includes moving the USA embassy to Jerusalem.

"In the last two days, we renewed the policy of assassinating senior terror officials, killed dozens of Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists and destroyed terror towers", Netanyahu stated. Two were confirmed as Israeli, the army said.

Netanyahu said on Monday: "The campaign is not over and it demands patience and sagacity".

Some two million Palestinians live in Gaza, the economy of which has suffered years of Israeli and Egyptian blockades as well as recent foreign aid cuts and sanctions by the Palestinian Authority, Hamas' West Bank-based rival.

The violence abated before dawn, after Palestinian officials said Egypt, Qatar and the United Nations had mediated a truce, and just as Gazans were preparing to begin the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Israel said one of the buildings included Hamas military intelligence and security offices. It said it attacked about 320 targets belonging to Gaza militant groups.

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), who has a history of making anti-Semitic statements, drew a moral equivalence between Israel and Hamas in a tweet posted Sunday, describing the "humanitarian crisis in Gaza" as "unsustainable".

The IDF released a video showing a building where it says the attack was launched being destroyed.

It's been less than a month since Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was reelected, and he seems to have tossed out what only past year had pushed his government into crisis, leading to the resignation of Avigdor Lieberman.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad announced on Monday morning that a ceasefire has been reached with Israel. The Palestinian Ministry of Health reported 25 casualties in Gaza, including three women - two of them pregnant - and two infants. It first identified the woman as the baby's mother, but the family later clarified she was the aunt.

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