• Thursday, October 02, 2014

Death toll passes 1,000 in Gaza

BBC Online
A general view of destruction in the Shejaia neighbourhood, which witnesses said was heavily hit by Israeli shelling and air strikes during an Israeli offensive, is seen in Gaza City. Photo: Reuters
A general view of destruction in the Shejaia neighbourhood, which witnesses said was heavily hit by Israeli shelling and air strikes during an Israeli offensive, is seen in Gaza City. Photo: Reuters

The death toll in Gaza has passed 1,000, Palestinian medical officials say, 19 days after Israel launched an offensive against Hamas militants.

It comes amid a 12-hour humanitarian truce, which Gaza residents have been using to gather essential supplies and retrieve bodies buried under rubble.

Palestinians carry the body of Tayyeb Shehada, whom medics said was killed during clashes with Israeli troops on Friday, during his funeral in the West Bank town of Hawara near Nablus July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters
Palestinians carry the body of Tayyeb Shehada, whom medics said was killed during clashes with Israeli troops on Friday, during his funeral in the West Bank town of Hawara near Nablus July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters

Forty-two Israelis have also been killed since the Israel-Hamas conflict began on 8 July.

International talks urging a longer truce were held in Paris on Saturday.

Dozens of bodies have been retrieved from previously inaccessible areas since the truce began at 08:00 local time (05:00 GMT), the BBC's Yolande Knell in Gaza reports.

The wife (L) of Palestinian Eid Rabah Fdilat, whom medics said was killed during clashes with Israeli troops on Friday, mourns during his funeral in Arroub refugee camp, north of the West Bank city of Hebron July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters
The wife (L) of Palestinian Eid Rabah Fdilat, whom medics said was killed during clashes with Israeli troops on Friday, mourns during his funeral in Arroub refugee camp, north of the West Bank city of Hebron July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters

About 5,870 Palestinians have also been wounded in the 19 days of fighting, health officials say.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said three soldiers were killed in fighting overnight, bringing the total number of Israeli deaths to 40 soldiers and two civilians.

Pro Palestinian protester burns an Israeli flag during demonstration banned by police, in support of Gaza in central Paris, July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters
Pro Palestinian protester burns an Israeli flag during demonstration banned by police, in support of Gaza in central Paris, July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters

'EXTEND THE CEASEFIRE'

The Israeli military says it will continue to "locate and neutralise" Hamas tunnels during the pause.

Israel launched its military offensive with the declared objective of stopping Hamas firing rockets from Gaza into Israel.

It also began a ground offensive on 18 July, saying it was necessary to destroy tunnels dug by militants to infiltrate Israel.

A demonstrator with face painted in the colours of the Palestinian flag protests outside the Israeli Embassy in west London July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters
A demonstrator with face painted in the colours of the Palestinian flag protests outside the Israeli Embassy in west London July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters

In Paris, US Secretary of State John Kerry met the foreign ministers of Turkey, Qatar and some European countries in the hopes of agreeing a longer ceasefire.

"We all call on parties to extend the humanitarian ceasefire," France's Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius told reporters after the meeting.

"We all want to obtain a lasting ceasefire as quickly as possible that addresses both Israeli requirements in terms of security and Palestinian requirements in terms of socio-economic development."

Relatives of Palestinian Tayyeb Shehada, whom medics said was killed during clashes with Israeli troops on Friday, mourn during his funeral in the West Bank town of Hawara near Nablus July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters
Relatives of Palestinian Tayyeb Shehada, whom medics said was killed during clashes with Israeli troops on Friday, mourn during his funeral in the West Bank town of Hawara near Nablus July 26, 2014. Photo: Reuters

Published: 8:54 pm Saturday, July 26, 2014

Last modified: 10:01 pm Saturday, July 26, 2014

TAGS: Israel 000 truce Hamas Gaza crisis death passes 1

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