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Palestinians: Israelis hit homes in north Gaza

Israeli aircraft attacked two buildings in the Gaza Strip early on Friday, wounding nine people, Palestinian officials said.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Israeli aircraft attacked two buildings in the Gaza Strip early Friday, wounding at least nine people, Palestinian officials said.

The first airstrike targeted the home of a local militant leader in the northern town of Jabaliya.

Relatives of Salim Thabet, an activist of the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades in the northern town of Jabaliya, said the army told him to evacuate the home about 15 minutes before the airstrike. The relatives said they were told to remain out of the area because more attacks were possible.

Hospital officials said the five people in a nearby house were moderately wounded.

The second airstrike hit a two-story home in Gaza City, setting it on fire and causing heavy damage. Several nearby homes were damaged, and four people were moderately wounded, officials said.

Security officials said one missile fired at the home did not explode, and a bomb squad was called in to dismantle it.

The army said both airstrikes had targeted weapons-storage facilities, and that it warned occupants to leave the areas before the attacks. The army, which carried out similar attacks earlier this week, says the warnings are meant to avoid civilian casualties.

Israel launched an offensive in Gaza on June 28, three days after militants infiltrated Israel and captured an Israeli soldier. Despite the offensive, the soldier still has not been released.

The Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades is a violent group loosely linked to President Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah movement.