« Local residents close to Al-Ghafri tower in Gaza were seen pulling bodies from the debris of a collapsed residential building on Tuesday, following the recent wave of Israeli airstrikes.
Footage also shows people digging through the huge pile of burning debris, as smoke continued to rise at the site.
« At night, residents of these buildings fled their homes and went east because of reports that Jews had threatened to bomb the Hajjah building, » stated one eyewitness Ezzedine Al-Mashharawi. « Soon after, residents took shelter over there near the Khalaf building which is located on the opposite side. »
« Suddenly, they [Israel] bombed the Khalaf building contrary to people’s expectations, therefore, there are numerous martyrs among our relatives, and they say there are people trapped under the rubble, » he added.
Israeli continued to launch airstrikes on the region following Saturday’s surprise attack by Palestinian group Hamas, after declaring war on the group and calling up over 300,000 reservists.
The Israeli military claimed it had struck hundreds of Hamas targets.
UN Human Rights chief Volker Turk claimed that the airstrikes had also hit residential buildings and schools, leading to civilian casualties.
On Monday, spokesman of Hamas’ armed wing, Abu Obeida, said that the group would killed one Israeli hostage for each time the country targets their homes in Gaza ‘without prior warning’.
Hamas launched thousands of rockets and deployed gunmen across the border on Saturday. It said the operation was due to the long-running Israeli blockade, raids on West Bank cities and other attacks.
Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen claimed that the ‘war crime will not be forgiven’, while Defence Minister Yoav Gallant announced a ‘complete siege’ of Gaza, cutting off power, food and water.
According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, 770 people have been killed in the Gaza Strip, and over 4,000 injured, since the latest Israeli air strikes began. Israeli authorities reported that over 900 had been killed and over 2,000 wounded by Hamas militants since Saturday. »