Israeli fighter jets continued to pummel the Gaza Strip on Thursday, as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defied the United States’ call to seek a de-escalation on the path to a ceasefire.
At least 227 Palestinians have been killed in 11 days of violence. The dead include 64 children and 38 women. Israeli authorities claimed that at least 12 people have been killed in Hamas shelling.
At least nine Palestinians were wounded in an Israeli attack on a house in the city of Khan Yunis in southern Gaza, according to medics.
Eight others were wounded in an air raid on a residential building in Jabalia in nothern Gaza.
US President Joe Biden on Wednesday discussed the Gaza situation with Netanyahu, telling him that he expected “a significant de-escalation today on the path to a ceasefire”.
But Netanyahu, speaking after the phone call with Biden, said he was “determined” to continue bombarding Gaza until Israel’s “aim is met”.
Diplomatic efforts for a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza’s Hamas rulers, meanwhile, remain stalled, with the United States continuing to block UN Security Council action on the issue.
Meanwhile, More than 130 Democratic members of the US House of Representatives called on Biden to “facilitate the immediate cessation of violence” between Israel and Hamas and to “press both sides to quickly negotiate a ceasefire”.
“The alternative is an unfolding human tragedy of unimaginable dimensions,” a letter said.