Tel Aviv/ Gaza City: Sunday witnessed the heaviest attack by Israeli forces on the Gaza Strip. The intense shelling has till now claimed the life of 87 people in a single day with 60 people being reported dead in a single district.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas described the scene at Shuja’iya as a massacre. Witnesses recounted harrowing details of streets littered with dead bodies.
A humanitarian truce for few hours was agreed by both the warring sides, but lasted only an hour after Israel resumed shelling accusing Hamas of breaking the ceasefire.
On its 13th day of the onslaught death toll from Israeli attacked spiraled towards the 400 mark as both the sides show no sign of relenting.
More bodies lay in the streets under gashes blasted into apartment buildings, people who had escaped the violence said, as the shelling continued.
The Palestinian death spiraled towards 400, with medics warning it could rise further due to the ongoing bombardment of areas north and east of Gaza City.
The death toll on the Palestinian side included children and women, with over 2,500 injured and almost 61,000 displaced seeking refuges in 49 UN Relief and Works Agency run centres, sources in the Gaza Strip said.
According to Palestinian health officials, the Israeli operation has claimed the life of 425 people, till now.
Districts of Shuja’iya and neighbouring Zeitun bore the maximum brunt of the Israeli bombing. The streets of Shejaiya were filled with thousands of people desperate to seek refuge in safer locations. Ambulances were unable to reach the affected areas because of intense shelling in the area.
For the past three days Israel had been warning the residents of the district to vacate. But many decided to stay put and were left stunned with the ferocity of bombardment.
Sunday was by far the deadliest day in the 13 day long conflict as Israel Defence Forces reported losing 13 of its soldiers.