– Israel hits 200 Gaza sites, 8 children reported dead, Hamas fires rockets (RT, July 9, 2014):
At least eight children have been killed in the last 24 hours as Operation Protective Edge launched by Israeli forces entered its second day. The IDF claims it has hit at least 200 targets in Gaza since Tuesday.
By Wednesday evening, Israel’s offensive had killed at least 53 people and injured over 450, while also striking scores of targets, Ma’an news agency reported citing medical officials.
According to IDF, the airstrikes were necessary in order to stifle rocket fire from Gaza. Israel indicated that a ‘weeks-long’ ground invasion could be rapidly approaching, reported AP on Wednesday.
“Despite the fact it will be hard, complicated and costly, we will have to take over Gaza temporarily, for a few weeks, to cut off the strengthening of this terror army,” Israeli intelligence minister,Yuval Steinitz, told Israel Radio. “If you ask my humble opinion, a significant operation like this is approaching.'”
Israel has mobilized thousands of forces along the border ahead of the possible ground operation.