The number of Palestinians killed by a massive Israeli air assault against the Gaza Strip has risen to 2,215, the Gaza Health Ministry said Saturday.
In a statement, the ministry said that 724 children and 458 women were among the people killed in the Israeli attacks.
The ministry also said that the number of wounded has risen to 8,714, including 2,450 children and 1,536 women.
In a dramatic escalation of Middle East tensions, a week ago Israeli forces launched a sustained and forceful military campaign against the Gaza Strip, a response to a military offensive by the Palestinian group Hamas in Israeli territories.
The conflict began last Saturday when Hamas initiated Operation Al-Aqsa Flood against Israel, a multi-pronged surprise attack including a barrage of rocket launches and infiltrations into Israel via land, sea, and air.
Hamas said the operation was in retaliation for the storming of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem and Israeli settlers’ growing violence against Palestinians.
The Israeli military then launched Operation Swords of Iron against Hamas targets within the Gaza Strip.
Israel's response has extended into cutting water and electricity supplies to Gaza, further worsening the living conditions in an area that has endured a crippling siege since 2007, as well as ordering over 1 million Gazans in the northern strip to evacuate to the southern strip within 24 hours.
*Writing by Ikram Kouachi
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