Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The IDF strikes targets across the Gaza Strip on the 2d day of OPE, killing 39 Palestinians. Fatal strikes take place in al-Maghazi r.c., Bayt Hanun, Gaza City, Nussayrat r.c. and Bayt Lahiya. Among the dead is an Islamic Jihad commander, killed in a strike on his home in Bayt Hanun along with 5 civilians. Palestinians fire 82 rockets and mortar shells into Israel, with 48 rockets striking Israel and 21 intercepted by Iron Dome batteries. There are no injuries directly caused by projectile fire, but there is some damage to property. Rockets land in and around Dimona, Tel Aviv, Haifa, and Jerusalem. M-75 rockets are fired at Tel Aviv, as well as Nevatim military airport, 44 mi. away from Gaza City. Al-Qassam Brigades, al-Quds Brigades, and Ali Abu Mustafa Brigades (PFLP) all claim responsibility for rocket and mortar fire. Al-Qassam Brigades fighters attempt an attack via the sea, emerging close to Kibbutz Zikim for the 2d day in a row. (AFP, AP, HA, JP, MNA, YA, WAFA 7/9; PCHR 7/10)

Israeli PM Netanyahu says that “we have decided to further intensify the attacks on Hamas and the terror organizations in Gaza” and that “Hamas will pay a heavy price for the firing of rockets at Israeli civilians.” Hamas leader Khalid Mish‘al, in a press conference in Doha, Qatar, says that calm can be achieved through “an immediate halt to the aggression and bombings.” He also reiterates that he does not know who carried out the killing of the 3 Israeli settler teenagers in the West Bank. Meanwhile, PA Pres. Abbas accuses Israel of a “genocide” in Gaza and “a war against the Palestinian people as a whole.” He also describes diplomatic efforts at avoiding further hostilities, saying that Palestinian officials are talking to Egypt’s Pres. al-Sisi and UN Secy.-Gen. Ban. Egyptian foreign ministry spokesperson Badr Abdelatty says that “there is no mediation, in the common sense of the word,” but that Cairo is making “diplomatic efforts” aimed “at immediately stopping Israeli aggression and ending all mutual violence.” (AFP, AP, HA, JP, MNA, YA, WAFA 7/9)