The Israeli army bombed the house of the Hamas leader for the Gaza Strip on Sunday (May 16), reaching a new level in its attacks on the Palestinian Islamist movement.
The fate of this top leader – Yahya Sinouar – of the movement controlling the Palestinian enclave, a poor territory of two million inhabitants under Israeli blockade for more than 10 years, is not immediately known.
The strike came in the aftermath of bombings in Gaza that claimed the lives of children and pulverized international media offices, and rocket salutes into Israel. Since the start of this new conflict between the Jewish state and armed Palestinian groups in Gaza on Monday, nearly 170 people, mostly Palestinians, have been killed.
→ REPORT. As hopes for a truce fade in Gaza, conflict spreads to West Bank
Israeli forces have “Attacked the home of Yahya Sinouar and his brother, a terrorist militant”, the army wrote on Twitter, posting a video showing a house sprayed in a cloud of dust. Palestinian security sources have confirmed a strike on the home of Yahya Sinouar, re-elected in March as head of Hamas’s political bureau in Gaza.
Antonio Guterres “appalled”
While the protagonists have so far remained deaf to international calls for a cessation of hostilities, diplomatic negotiations are intensifying with a virtual meeting of the Security Council scheduled for Sunday at 2 p.m. GMT.
UN boss Antonio Guterres said to himself “Appalled” speak “Growing number of civilian casualties” and “Deeply disturbed” by the Israeli attack on the media building. For his part, an American envoy, Hady Amr, is due to meet with Israeli leaders in Jerusalem and Palestinian officials in the occupied West Bank during the day.
On Saturday, ten Palestinians, including eight children from the same family, perished in an Israeli strike on a refugee camp in the Palestinian enclave. A 50-year-old Israeli man, driving his car, was later killed on the outskirts of Tel Aviv in the explosion of rockets fired by Hamas to “Avenge”, according to this movement, the strike “Against women and children” in the territory.
A building housing pulverized media
Later, a 13-story building that housed the teams of the Qatari news channel Al-Jazeera and the American news agency Associated Press (AP) was pulverized by strikes by the Israeli army which had previously requested evacuation of the building.
→ MAINTENANCE. Israeli-Palestinian conflict: “We are facing a humanitarian catastrophe”
According to the army, the building housed “Entities belonging to military intelligence” of Hamas accused of using civilians as “Human shields”. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who spoke to the US president after the strikes, said he has the support ” unequivocal ” by Joe Biden.
Joe Biden, who also spoke on the phone with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said he supported Israel’s right “To defend oneself” while expressing concern about “The safety of journalists”.