'Escalating towards full-scale war': Israel vows more attacks on Gaza before truce

WION Web Team
Jerusalem Published: May 12, 2021, 04:35 PM(IST)

Fire rages at sunrise in Khan Yunish following an Israeli airstrike on targets in the southern Gaza Strip Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Israel has been using the Iron Dome air defence system as Hamas targeted Israel including capital Tel Aviv firing over 1,000 rockets as Hamas threatened to step up operation named "Sword of Jerusalem".

Amid the continued clashes between the Israeli Army and Hamas which attacked Israel with rockets on Tuesday, Israel on Wednesday vowed more attacks to bring "total, long-term quiet" before a ceasefire.

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Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz said, "this is just the beginning and would aim to restore peace for the long-term."

As the conflict escalated, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan called for de-escalation while expressing concern over the "continuing clashes and the growing number of people killed and wounded."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had declared a state of emergency in the Israeli city of Lod as riots broke out among Arabs.

At least 55 people have been killed so far and 900 Palestinians wounded since the violence spiralled out of control as Palestinian militants launched multiple rocket attacks on Israel on Monday with casualties reported in Gaza, West Bank and Israel after clashes at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque compound.

UN's Middle East envoy Tor Wennesland warned that the situation was turning towards "we're escalating towards a full-scale war" even as British PM Johnson urged both sides to "step back from the brink".

Israel has been using the Iron Dome air defence system as Hamas targeted Israel including capital Tel Aviv firing over 1,000 rockets as Hamas threatened to step up operation named "Sword of Jerusalem".

Israel, which calls its operation "Guardian of the Walls," said it expected the fighting to intensify.

Chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court(ICC) Fatou Bensouda said possible "commission of crimes under the Rome Statute" have been committed as both sides exchanged heavy fire.

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