Death toll in Gaza hits 316 after fresh Israel air strikes

A picture taken from the Israeli Gaza border shows an Israeli army flare illuminating the sky above the Gaza strip on July 18, 2014. Two Palestinians were killed in fresh Israeli air strikes in Gaza on Saturday, July 19, 2014. morning, among them a s
A picture taken from the Israeli Gaza border shows an Israeli army flare illuminating the sky above the Gaza strip on July 18, 2014. Two Palestinians were killed in fresh Israeli air strikes in Gaza on Saturday, July 19, 2014. morning, among them a six-year-old child, medics said. -- PHOTO: AFP

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) - Two Palestinians were killed in fresh Israeli air strikes in Gaza on Saturday morning, among them a six-year-old child, medics said.

The new deaths raised the toll on the 12th day of violence in Gaza to 316 Palestinians, according to emergency services spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra.

The two new deaths were a man killed north of Gaza City and a six-year-old child killed in the northern Gaza area of Beit Lahiya.

Their deaths were reported after five bodies were pulled from a home hit by an Israeli air strike in southern Gaza's Khan Yunis.

Also in Khan Yunis, the body of another man was retrieved from the rubble of a building, and a man died of wounds sustained on Friday, Qudra said.

The discoveries came after the deaths of seven people outside a mosque in Khan Yunis, three of them from the same family.

Three more people were killed in three separate strikes in Beit Hanun in the north, Deir al-Balah in central Gaza, and another in Khan Yunis.

In Khan Yunis, a later strike on a home killed Raed al-Laqan, 28.

The deaths took to 316 the toll from an Israeli operation to stamp out rocket fire from Gaza, many of them women and children.

One Israeli civilian and one Israeli soldier have been killed since the campaign started on July 8, and several wounded.

The soldier was killed by friendly fire, the army said.

Some 2,283 Palestinians have been wounded, Mr Qudra said.

Operation Protective Edge is the bloodiest conflict in the besieged coastal enclave since 2009.

Israel launched its ground offensive late Thursday, starting a new phase in the operation which it said aimed to destroy tunnels used by the territory's dominant power, Islamist movement Hamas.