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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Israel pounds Gaza for second day

By Nidal al-Mughrabi | Reuters | Sunday, December 28, 2008

GAZA (Reuters) - Israel launched air strikes on Gaza for a second day on Sunday, piling pressure on Hamas after killing more than 270 people in one of the bloodiest days in 60 years of conflict between the Palestinians and the Jewish state.

Dozens of Israeli armored vehicles massed along the Gaza border for a possible ground invasion and the U.N. Security Council called early on Sunday for a halt to the violence.

Israeli military affairs commentators said the Israeli offensive did not appear to be aimed at retaking the Gaza Strip or destroying the territory's Hamas government -- ambitious goals that could prove difficult and politically risky to achieve ahead of Israel's February 10 parliamentary election.

Instead, they said, Israel -- after an air bombardment on Saturday -- wanted to strengthen its deterrence power and force Hamas into a new truce that would lead to a long-term halt to cross-border rocket salvoes.

Israel said its warplanes carried out about 100 strikes on Saturday and that Palestinian militants had fired some 70 rockets at the Jewish state, killing one Israeli man.[read more]

VIDEO : 27th December 2008 - International Solidarity Movement (ISM) volunteers witness the devastation caused as over 200 Palestinians were killed by Israeli air-strikes

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