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List of casualites grow in Gaza war

Source: Reuters - Mon, 14 Jul 2014 19:10 PM
Author: Reuters
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Hundreds of Palestinians mourn the death of a man shot dead by Israeli troops in the occupied West Bank.

The 21-year-old was fired on as a group threw rocks at soldiers -- angry over Israel's military offensive in Gaza.

The Israeli Defense Minister says Hamas is ultimately to blame.

(SOUNDBITE) (Hebrew) ISRAELI DEFENSE MINISTER MOSHE YAALON SAYING:

"The operation that we began last week as a result of the escalation, was undoubtedly caused by Hamas. And if we analyse this, it is completely clear that it brought about this escalation, beginning with the kidnapping of the teenagers in Judea and Samaria, and the kidnapping coincided with firing, spatters around the Gaza Strip, and a certain stage, at the beginning of last week, to a significant escalation."

Hamas aired video, that cannot be independently verified, of what appeared to be a drone loaded with rockets.

The Israeli military said it had shot down a drone; the first reported deployment of an unmanned aircraft by Palestinian militants.

Rocket attacks have been regularly intercepted... but Israelis continue to run for cover as sirens ring out in Tel Aviv on a daily basis.

Hundreds of rockets have been launched, and around half a dozen Israelis have been wounded since the offensive began.

And Gaza health officials say at least 169 Palestinians have been killed. Civilians, including children, are among the victims.

(SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) MOHAMMAD SHAMLAKH'S GRANDMOTHER, UM MAHMOUD SAYING:

"We were just walking, when a rocket hit the boy and my son. My son was taken to the hospital with shrapnel wounds in the arms, legs and face, and his wife also had some in her arms, but their son was hit the hardest. He was hit in the head and in the back, and he had internal bleeding in his head, he had to have an operation."

The UN Security Council issued a statement calling for a ceasefire.

Rockets continue to bombard neighborhoods on both sides, and the fighting continues to threaten civilian safety.

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