Wednesday, Dec 24, 2008
Israel launched a massive wave of air strikes on Hamas targets in Gaza on Saturday, killing at least 140 Palestinians after warning of a fiery riposte to ongoing rocket fire, officials said.
Israeli military spokesman Avi Benayahu told army radio the massive bombardment of Gaza was only just beginning.
“At least 140 people perished in these operations and more than 100 others were wounded throughout the Gaza Strip,” Hamas health minister Bassem Naim told AFP.
The bombardments killed at least 70 people in Gaza City itself, most of them believed to have been inside Hamas police headquarters, medics said.
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The mid-morning air raids followed days of rocket and mortar attacks on Israel by militants inside Gaza, which the Jewish state had warned would be met with harsh reprisals.
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“This is only just the beginning of an operation launched after a security cabinet decision. It could take time. We have not fixed a timeline and we will act according to the situation on the ground,” Benayahu said.