|A Palestinian woman reacts upon seeing her destroyed home after it was hit by Israeli shelling in Gaza. Photograph: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters|
The humanitarian truce in Gaza has collapsed after two hours with fierce fighting in the south of the enclave, reports of a missing Israeli soldier and a formal Israeli announcement that it would resume its military operation.
Israeli tank fire on the southern town of Rafah was reported to have killed at least 40 Palestinians on Friday, turning what was intended to be the first day of calm into one of the deadliest days in Gaza so far. Hamas launched rockets towards Israel, while fierce small-arms fire and artillery shelling erupted at Beit Hanoun and Gaza’s northern end.
The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) later said it feared one of its soldiers may have been abducted in an early morning attack by Palestinian militants at a tunnel near Gaza. Israel Radio named him as Second Lieutenant Hadar Goldin, 23, from Kfar Saba. A senior Hamas member, Musa Abu Marzouk, said the soldier was an officer taken prisoner near Rafah before the ceasefire came into effect.
Palestinian fishermen who had ventured tentatively out into the Mediterranean earlier in the morning rushed to get back to port, while air raid sirens could be heard along the neighbouring Israeli coast.
Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that Israel’s military coordinator in the Palestinian territories told the UN envoy, Robert Serry, that as far as Israel was concerned the ceasefire – announced on Thursday night after lengthy behind-the-scenes negotiations – was over. Israel claimed that the truce was first broken by an ambush by Palestinian militants on Israeli forces near Rafah.The following article by John Glaser, originally published at Antiwar on February 6, 2014, provides significant insight and information about recent ceasefire violations between Israel and Gaza.
|Gaza City, located in the northern Gaza Strip, is seen shortly before the start of a proposed cease-fire Friday morning. /|
Enter your email address to subscribe to our newsletter:
Delivered by FeedBurner