New Israeli Airstrikes Kill Senior Hamas Leader

But shelling is reportedly less intense after international criticism
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 9, 2014 8:59 AM CDT
Smoke rises in Gaza City after an Israeli airstrike Saturday.   (AP Photo/Dusan Vranic)
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(Newser) – Israeli airstrikes struck more than 20 targets today in the Gaza Strip and killed a senior Hamas member, as militant rocket fire continued following the collapse of a three-day truce. Hamas officials said Israel airstrikes hit houses, mosques, its warehouses, and training sites. Three bodies were found under the ruins of the al-Qassam mosque in Gaza, including that of senior Hamas official Moaaz Zaid, said Palestinian health official Ashraf al-Kidra. The Israeli military said militants in Gaza fired five rockets toward Israel, for a total of 70 since the truce expired. In response, Israel has targeted more than 30 sites in Gaza since yesterday, it said.

The Islamic militants resumed their rocket attacks yesterday shortly before the 72-hour truce expired, injuring two Israelis and drawing a wave of retaliatory airstrikes. The fighting shattered a brief calm in the monthlong war and dealt a blow to Egyptian-led efforts to secure a long-term ceasefire. Still, the LA Times observes that the renewed fighting is less intense than it was before the truce, with Israel seemingly shifting toward more precise airstrikes after international criticism. Peace talks, however, remain stalled. (Read more Israel and Palestinians stories.)

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