Israel Launches Two Airstrikes in Gaza -- At Least One Palestinian Dead, 10 Injured
GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories — Israeli air strikes killed at least one Palestinian and wounded 10, two seriously, in the Gaza Strip late on Tuesday, Palestinian medics and health officials told AFP.
They named the dead man as Abdallah al-Telbani, 22, and said he was riding in a motorised rickshaw in Jabaliya refugee camp in the north of the strip when the attack took place. It was not immediately clear if the other casualties were riding with him.
A second strike hit a jeep travelling east of Gaza City, injuring 10 people, health ministry officials said.
Israeli public radio said Telbani was a member of Islamic Jihad, but the movement's armed wing, the Al-Quds Brigades, said none of its members were hit in the Jabaliya raid.
An Israeli military statement said the target there was "a squad affiliated with recent terror activity."
"The Israel Defence Forces will not tolerate any attempt to harm Israeli civilians and ... soldiers, and will operate against anyone who uses terror against the State of Israel," it said, without elaborating.
It had no immediate comment on the second strike.
The raids took place on the third anniversary of the start of Operation Cast Lead, Israel's devastating 22-day offensive against the Hamas-ruled coastal strip and came as the militant group and its Fatah rivals sought to implement a reconciliation deal.
Since 2007, the Palestinian territories have been politically divided into two separate territories, with the Fatah of Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas largely ruling the West Bank and Hamas governing Gaza.
In May, following years of bitter rivalry, the two factions signed a unity agreement which has yet to be implemented.
Gaza militants in October announced a truce with Israel but the ceasefire has been been a shaky one with sporadic rocket fire drawing Israeli retaliation.
The last Israeli strike on the strip was on December 11, when a Palestinian father and his daughter were wounded in a raid that apparently targeted a neighbouring building in Gaza City.
Two days earlier, a man and his 12-year-old son were killed and 10 civilians wounded when an Israeli air strike hit a family home in Gaza City which was located next to a Hamas militant training ground.
On December 7, Ismail al-Areer, 22, a member of Al-Quds Brigades, the armed wing of Islamic Jihad, was killed in a strike that also injured five other members of the movement.
The operations followed days of rising tensions, with Gaza militants lobbing a barrage of rockets into southern Israel and the Israeli military launching a series of air raids.