Israeli Forces Attack Gaza's 2nd Biggest City

4 Israeli soldiers die in friendly fire; Khan Younis raided
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 6, 2009 7:27 AM CST
Smoke caused by explosions from Israeli forces' operations rises from buildings on the outskirts of Gaza City, Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2009.   (AP Photos/Hatem Moussa)
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(Newser) – Israeli tanks and troops moved today into Gaza's second-largest city, Khan Younis, covered by intensive airstrikes. Fighting has been heaviest in the north of the Strip, where witnesses have reported waves of bombings, and naval attacks from the Mediterranean killed 10 Palestinians. The Guardian also reports that 4 Israeli soldiers were killed and 24 wounded in two separate friendly-fire incidents.

Despite mounting international calls for a ceasefire, Israeli officials reiterated today that the operation would continue. Civilian casualties have mounted quickly as Israel presses deeper into the Strip; more than 550 have died and 2,500 have been injured. The Red Cross said that Gaza now faced a "full-blown" humanitarian crisis, and that the situation for Palestinians was "extreme and traumatic as a result of 10 days of uninterrupted fighting."