Israeli airstrikes on Gaza continue for second day, 11 killed

Israeli military sources said the bombings would continue in the coming days as well. Among those killed is a five-year-old girl

August 06, 2022 by Peoples Dispatch
Israeli bombing of Gaza on August 5. Photo: Rizek Abdeljawad/Xinhua

Israeli airstrikes on the besieged Gaza strip continued for the second day on Saturday, August 6. One person – 24-year old Tamim Ghassan Hijazi from the az-Zanna neighborhood of Khan Younis – was killed on Saturday, bringing the total numbers of deaths to 11, including a five-year-old girl. Nearly 80 people have been injured.

The airstrikes have additionally damaged several homes, shops, and other buildings. Israel’s airstrikes began on Friday after it announced that it would target Islamic Jihad leaders and members in Gaza. The Israeli military has reportedly said that it will be continuing its campaign for at least a week.

Those killed on Friday include a senior leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and a five-year-old girl identified as Alaa Qudoom. 55 people were injured, including 13 women and 23 children. The Islamic Jihad group’s assassinated commander was identified as Tayseer al-Jabari, Gaza Northern Command leader of the Al-Quds brigades. The Islamic Jihad, Hamas, which governs Gaza, and other Palestinian factions vowed severe retaliation to the Israeli bombings. They reaffirmed the Palestinian unity in the struggle against Israeli violence and occupation. Soon after, Palestinian resistance groups started firing hundreds of rockets in self-defense, causing air raid sirens to go off across the southern and central areas of Israel. There were no immediate reports of any casualties.

In the aftermath of the airstrikes, Palestinians activists and civilians staged a march in Haifa in the occupied West Bank to protest the latest Israeli aggression. The protesters waved Palestinian flags and held up banners and posters condemning the Israeli airstrikes and demanded that the international community pressurize Israel to put an end to them. More protests are planned in the coming days in Haifa, Jerusalem and Ramallah.

The airstrikes came just days after Israel arrested two senior Islamic Jihad leaders in the occupied West Bank who they accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli citizens. Earlier in the week, Israel closed two of its border crossings with Gaza. Gaza has already been under a suffocating land, air and sea blockade from Israel on one side and Egypt on the other since 2007, causing its economy to collapse and making the majority of the civilians dependent on international humanitarian assistance for their daily survival. It has caused a rise in poverty and unemployment. The multiple Israeli invasions of Gaza in the last two decades and bombing campaigns in recent years have also killed thousands of Palestinians and injured tens of thousands of others, besides destroying the civilian and medical infrastructure in the strip, resulting in Gazans facing an acute shortage of hospitals, medicines, beds and advanced treatment.

The United Nations has strongly denounced the Israeli airstrikes, with the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland, saying, “I am deeply concerned by the ongoing escalation. I am deeply saddened by reports that a five-year-old child has been killed in these strikes. There can be no justification for any attacks against civilians.”

Meanwhile, the US, Israel’s primary international ally, repeated the decades-old line of “Israel having a right to defend itself.