Heavy Aerial Exchange Kills 35 In Gaza, 5 In Israel

Gaza/Jerusalem: The escalation of hostilities between Israel and Hamas saw at least 35 people being killed in Gaza and five in Israel in one of the deadliest aerial exchanges for years.

Israel carried out plenty of airstrikes in Gaza in the early hours of Wednesday, as the Islamist group and other Palestinian militants fired multiple rocket barrages at Tel Aviv and Beersheba, reported news agency Reuters.

A multi-story residential building collapsed in Gaza and another was damaged heavily following repeated hits by Israeli airstrikes.

According to Israel, its jets had targeted and killed several Hamas intelligence leaders early on Wednesday. Other strikes targeted were rocket launch sites and the offices of the Hamas.

Since a 2014 war in Gaza, this was the heaviest offensive between Israel and Hamas that prompted international concern that the situation could spiral out of control.

“Stop the fire immediately. We’re escalating towards a full scale war. Leaders on all sides have to take the responsibility of de-escalation,” tweeted UN Middle East peace envoy Tor Wennesland.

“The cost of war in Gaza is devastating & is being paid by ordinary people. UN is working w/ all sides to restore calm. Stop the violence now,” Wennesland wrote.

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