Israel, Gazan militants in new exchange of fire after deadly flare-up

Smoke rises following an Israeli air strike on Gaza City

Israel, Gazan militants in new exchange of fire after deadly flare-up

According to medical officials, the Israeli regime's airstrikes killed Enas Khammash, a pregnant Gazan woman, and her 18-month-old daughter Bayan, as well as another Palestinian.

In a statement on Twitter, the army said the strikes were "conducted in response to the rockets launched from Gaza at Israel throughout the night", adding that 180 rockets - at least 30 of which were intercepted by Israel's "Iron Dome" defense system - were fired from the Gaza Strip.

Air raid sirens signaling incoming rocket fire wailed across southern Israel throughout Thursday, with warnings going off in the southern city of Beersheba for the first time since the 2014 war.

Angry that major media outlets are highlighting the fact that its latest wave of bombings killed a pregnant woman and her young child, the Israeli government has begun openly pressuring news outlets that dare to report its war crimes accurately.

The Said Meshal Cultural Centre confirmed on its Facebook page the offices in Gaza City had been destroyed, saying the building also hosted offices for the Egyptian community in Gaza. Hamas has claimed responsibility for the rocket attack, stressing that they were in retaliation for the killing of two of Palestinians by Israeli forces.

The White House has said that easing the humanitarian crisis in Gaza is one of its priorities.

Hamas, the Palestinian group which controls the Gaza Strip, has told Al Jazeera a truce has been agreed to stop the violence.

On Tuesday, the Israeli military struck a Hamas military post in Gaza after it said militants fired on Israeli troops on the border. Local health officials said 18 bystanders were wounded by the blast. The Palestinian Health Ministry says seven bystanders were wounded in Thursday evening's airstrike in the Shati refugee camp.

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Smoke billows during an Israeli air strike on Gaza City, Aug. 9, 2018.

Israel's latest bombing campaign in Gaza comes just weeks after Israeli F-16s carried out "wide-scale" airstrikes throughout the occupied territory. Some rockets landed in the communities, and many others were shot down by the Iron Dome, which is created to intercept only rockets headed towards population centers.

Strikingly, the word "respond", or any variation thereof, appears only in context of Hamas responding to Israeli strikes: "Hamas, the Islamic militant group that has ruled Gaza for 11 years, has been trying to change the balance of deterrence in the area, responding to every Israeli strike against Gaza". "I am sure the residents of the Gaza border communities are strong and we call on them to continue to listen to the instructions of the Home Front Command", Head of the Southern Command Maj.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas earlier urged the United Nations to stop Israel's latest aggression against Gaza, which has been under a crippling Israeli siege for the past decade.

"If the current escalation, however, is not contained immediately, the situation can rapidly deteriorate with devastating consequences for all people", he said in a statement.

Palestinians look at damage at the site of an Israeli air strike in Al-Mughraqa on the outskirts of Gaza City, Aug. 9, 2018.

The marches have been accompanied by clashes as some protesters hurl stones at Israeli soldiers and attempt to breach the border fence, at times laying explosive devices on the fence and using incendiary kites to set ablaze Israeli fields.

At least 165 Palestinians have killed by Israeli fire since then.

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