At least 60 Palestinians, many of them civilians, were killed by tank shells, air strikes or gunfire in the Gaza Strip’s largest city on Sunday as Israel intensified its nearly two-week old war against Hamas, Financial Times reported.
Israel stepped up its ground offensive against the Islamist militants, expanding from a limited operation targeting tunnel networks on the border to an assault on urban areas inside Gaza as it shelled the al-Shuja’iya neighborhood in the east of Gaza City, the report said.
The shelling of buildings left many dead or wounded, and prompted thousands to flee their homes.
Hamas fighters fired back, engaging Israeli troops with rocket propelled grenades and gunfire, the report said.
Israel’s military said 13 members of its elite Golani infantry brigade had been killed in Sunday’s offensive.
Palestinian health officials put the number of the day’s casualties across the Gaza Strip as of Sunday afternoon at more than 80 dead and 210 wounded, but ambulances were still arriving at Gaza City’s al-Shifa hospital and the numbers rose as the day progressed, the report said.
US secretary of state John Kerry has urged Hamas to accept a ceasefire deal to halt what he called an “ugly” war.
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