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11th May 2021

Israel launches new airstrikes on Gaza after overnight attacks

Danny Jones

Israel bomb Gaza after Hamas airstrikes

24 people have reportedly already been killed, including nine children

Following the reignition of a long-held conflict between Israel and Palestine, as more than 300 people were injured during protests in Jerusalem that began on Saturday, a series of attacks and counter-attacks have now been launched.

Hamas fired more than 200 rockets on Jerusalem and parts of southern Israel in response to the initial violence that broke out this weekend.  Last night, Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, launched a series of airstrikes on the Gaza strip. It is thought among the hundreds injured, 24 have been declared dead with nine of those being children.

While tensions have been rising throughout Ramadan, it was celebrations surrounding Israel’s “Jerusalem Day” (dating back to its capture of the city in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war) that saw temperatures rise. Israeli police came down on Palestinian protestors outside the al-Aqsa mosque in the heart of the city, causing Palestine‘s militant group to respond.

Netanyahu has warned that the fighting could “continue for some time”, stating that Hamas’ reaction “crossed a red line”. It is estimated that more than 700 injured were injured in the retaliatory airstrikes conducted on Monday night but the numbers will continue to rise as the conflict carries on.

According to IDF spokesman, Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, the strikes against targets in Gaza had been planned for a long time, while the nation’s “heavy-handed” policing of the protests have been blamed for tensions flaring.

Both the US and the UN have warned that law enforcement needs to “exercise maximum restraint and respect the right to freedom of peaceful assembly”. The protests are from Palestinians who are being forcefully expelled from Sheikh Jarrah, a neighbourhood that has been described as emblematic of their struggle by some.

Historically known as Gaza Strip, the self-governing Palestinian territory which borders Israel, alongside its counterpart West Bank located in Israeli territory, have been two of the most volatile and combative regions in modern history.