Palestinian medics from Gaza City’s al-Shifa hospital load body bags with the remains of children on July 21, 2014 after an Israeli air strike in Gaza City killed 11 people, including five children. (Photo: AFP – Marco Longari)
A child and three women, one of them pregnant, were killed in two separate Israeli air strikes in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, medics said, as the overall death toll in 15 days of attacks climbed to over 625.
Two women were killed in air strikes in the eastern Gaza district of Zeitoun, along with a pregnant woman and a child killed in a second strike in northern Beit Hanoun, emergency services spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra said.
In the latest attack Tuesday, six people, including an elderly woman and her brother, were killed in three separate raids targeting Bureij and Al-Maghazi in central Gaza, and Rafah in the south.
Other attacks Tuesday also killed seven people in Gaza, including five members of the same family, Qudra said.
The deaths hike the total Palestinian toll to 625 since Israel launched its relentless assault against Gaza on July 8, Qudra said. Another 3,640 people have been wounded.
Qudra said a strike on Deir al-Balah in central Gaza killed five family members, four of them women.
Another person was killed in a strike in nearby Nusseirat, and one more died in the southern city of Khan Younis.
Many of those killed in the relentless Israeli shelling and airstrikes in the Gaza Strip have been women and children, medics say. On the Israeli side, 27 soldiers and two civilians have been killed.
On Tuesday morning, civil defense crews with a crane parked outside the Salam building in Gaza City, which was hit in an Israeli air strike on Monday.
The tower block’s top five floors had collapsed onto its bottom four floors. The leg of a person was visible from the street, lying on a piece of rubble caked with streams of dried blood.
Early Tuesday, the Israeli army said another two of its troops had been killed in clashes in Gaza a day earlier, raising Monday’s toll to nine soldiers.
It confirmed that a soldier Hamas claimed to have captured two days ago — Oron Shaul — was dead but that his body remains unaccounted for.
Overall, 27 soldiers have died in the past four days, with 13 killed on Sunday alone in what was the bloodiest single day for the Israeli military since the Lebanon war of 2006.
Two Israeli civilians have also been killed by rocket fire.