An Israeli air raid in Gaza City killed at least 10 Palestinians, mostly children, early on Saturday. It is the deadliest single strike since the battle with Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers erupted earlier this week. The air strike hit a three-story house in Gaza City's Shati refugee camp, killing eight children and two women from an extended family. Mohammed Hadidi told reporters his wife and five children had gone to celebrate the Eid al-Fitr holiday with relatives. She and three of the children, aged 6 to 14, were killed, while an 11-year-old is missing. Only his 5-month-old son Omar is known to have survived.
Children's toys and a Monopoly board game could be seen among the rubble, as well as plates of uneaten food from the holiday gathering.
"There was no warning," said Jamal Al-Naji, a neighbor living in the same building. "You filmed people eating and then you bombed them?" he said, addressing Israel.
The airstrike on Saturday came roughly an hour after the Israeli military ordered people to evacuate a building that houses The Associated Press, Al-Jazeera and a number of offices and apartments. There was no immediate explanation for why the building was targeted.
The spiraling violence has raised fears of a new Palestinian "intifada," or uprising at a time when there have been no peace talks in years. Palestinians on Saturday were marking Nakba (Catastrophe) Day, when they commemorate the estimated 700,000 people who were expelled from or fled their homes in what was now Israel during the 1948 war surrounding its creation. That raised the possibility of even more unrest.
U.S. diplomat Hady Amr arrived on Friday as part of Washington's efforts to de-escalate the conflict, and the U.N. Security Council was set to meet on Sunday. But Israel turned down an Egyptian proposal for a one-year truce that Hamas rulers had accepted, an Egyptian official said Friday on condition of anonymity to discuss the negotiations.