12 people reportedly killed in latest Israeli airstrikes on Gaza | Israelo-Palestinian conflict

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement said three of its leaders were killed along with their wives and some children.

Twelve people were killed in Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip in what the Israeli military said targeted members of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement.

Al Jazeera’s Youmna El Sayed, reporting from Gaza, said the Health Ministry said 12 people were killed in the Gaza Strip and at least 20 others injured in the Israeli airstrikes.

Explosions targeting residential apartments were heard around 2 a.m. local time on Tuesday (2300 GMT Monday) in different parts of Gaza, El Sayed said.

“Of those 12, three of them are Islamic Jihad commanders while the other nine are civilians – mostly families of those commanders, as well as civilians around the apartments that were targeted,” El Sayed said.

The 20 wounded were also civilians, she said.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement announced that three of its leaders had been killed in the airstrikes. The deceased have been identified as Jihad al-Ghannam, Khalil al-Bahtini and Tariq Izz al-Deen.

The three were killed along with their wives and some children, the group said in a statement that did not give details of their wives or the number of children killed or their ages.

Damage caused by an Israeli military missile strike in Rafah, southern Gaza Strip, on May 9, 2023 (Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters)

Witnesses said an explosion hit the top floor of an apartment building in Gaza City and a house in the southern town of Rafah, Reuters news agency reported.

The Israeli military said the airstrikes, dubbed “Operation Shield and Arrow,” targeted three Palestinian Islamic Jihad operatives it said were responsible for the recent rocket fire into Israel.

Last week, Israeli missiles pounded the densely populated Gaza Strip following rockets fired into Israeli territory following the death in an Israeli prison of notorious Palestinian hunger striker Khader Adnan.

Adnan, an activist affiliated with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, died after nearly three months on hunger strike. Protesting his arrest without charge, Adnan had refused to eat for 87 days, according to the Palestinian Prisoners Society.

Last week’s Israeli bombardment damaged several areas of Gaza, including al-Safina, al-Baydar and near the al-Zaytoun neighborhood, Al Jazeera’s Maram Humaid reported.

Hashel Mubarak al-Swerki, a 58-year-old father of 11, died after being seriously injured by shrapnel during the Israeli attack northwest of Gaza City. Five other people were also injured by Israeli missiles east of Beit Hanoun, north of the besieged strip.

Calm was restored after Qatari, Egyptian and United Nations officials intervened to broker a ceasefire agreement between Israel and armed Palestinian factions, officials said.

Ahead of the launch of Palestinian rockets in response to Tuesday’s airstrikes, the Israeli military has issued instructions advising Israeli residents of communities within 40 km (25 miles) of Gaza to stay close to bomb shelters. designated, the Associated Press news agency reported.

COGAT, an Israeli Defense Ministry unit that coordinates civil affairs with the Palestinian authorities, said two crossings with Gaza have been closed to the entry and exit of people and goods until further notice. , reported Reuters.

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