Israel Launched Ground Incursion into Gaza Strip

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon ordered the Israel Defense Forces to launch a ground incursion in the Gaza Strip Thursday night, in order to “damage...

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon ordered the Israel Defense Forces to launch a ground incursion in the Gaza Strip Thursday night, in order to “damage the underground tunnel terrors constructed in Gaza leading into Israeli territory.”

Earlier, Israel resumed airstrikes on the Gaza Strip at 3:00 P.M. after a six hour temporary cease-fire to allow humanitarian aid to reach Gaza residents. The cease-fire began at 9:00 A.M. on Thursday morning, though Hamas fired rockets at Israel roughly two hours later.

Since the end of the ceasefire, over 100 rockets and mortar shells have been fired at Israel, including large barrages aimed primarily at the south, but some have also reached central Israel. Israeli airstrikes killed four Palestinian children, three in Zeitoun and one in Khan Yunis.

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Israeli soldiers stand on Merkava tanks in an army deployment area near Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip on July 8, 2014. ©AFP

Also on Thursday afternoon, representatives from UNRWA, the UN agency caring for Palestinian refugees, found roughly 20 rockets hidden in a vacant UNRWA school in the Gaza Strip.

Israel’s security cabinet is set to meet on Friday morning in Tel Aviv to discuss expanding Operation Protective Edge.

Vedat Xhymshiti; is an independent journalist and war correspondent. He has reported on a number of Middle Eastern conflicts from the Arab Spring in 2010 to the current Syrian civil war. He has been published in various media including Der Spiegel, NY Times, TIME, Paris Match, Le Monde ect. He is specialized in International Relations and Diplomacy. Xhymshiti is also a print media critic, a columnist for the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, and founder of THEFrontliner.net

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