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Israeli warplanes pound northern Gaza Strip, two Palestinians injured

This file picture shows two Israeli Air Force F-16 fighter jets shortly after takeoff from a military base in the occupied territories.

At least two Palestinians have sustained injuries when Israeli fighter jets launched an airstrike against a residential area in the northern part of the Gaza Strip as the Tel Aviv regime continues with its acts of aggression against the impoverished coastal sliver.

Local sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Arabic-language Ma’an news agency that the warplanes had attacked a site used for releasing incendiary kites and balloons into the occupied territories.

The sources added that the injured Palestinians have been transferred to hospital to receive medical treatment, where doctors have described their injuries as “moderate.”

The development came less than a day after Hamas said it had reached a ceasefire with Israel after a wave of Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, and dozens of rockets fired from the Palestinian enclave in response.

Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said the Palestinian resistance movement had agreed to an “Egyptian offer to return to a ceasefire to stop this escalation."

The Islamic Jihad Movement also accepted the agreement with Israel.

Daoud Shiha, a spokesman for the movement, said the ceasefire came into force by 8.00 p.m. local time (1700 GMT) on Saturday.

Palestinian fighters will abide by the ceasefire as long as Israel does, Shiha highlighted.

An unnamed Israeli military spokesman said the armed forces’ actions would depend on what happens on the ground.

The Israeli military frequently bombs the Gaza Strip, with civilians being the main target of such attacks.

In early July 2014, Israel waged a war on the Gaza Strip. The 50-day military aggression, which ended on August 26, 2014, killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians, including 577 children. Over 11,100 others – including 3,374 children, 2,088 women and 410 elderly people – were also wounded in the war.

The Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli siege since June 2007. The blockade has caused a decline in the standards of living as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty.

Palestinians in Gaza have been rallying every Friday since March 30 as a part of a peaceful campaign known as the Great March of Return. So far, some 140 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in anti-occupation protests in the Gaza Strip.

A total of 14,811 Palestinians have also sustained injuries, of whom 366 are reportedly in a critical condition.

The Gaza clashes reached their peak on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary of Nakba Day (Day of Catastrophe), which coincided this year with the US embassy relocation from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.

On June 13, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a Turkish and Algerian-sponsored resolution, condemning Israel for Palestinian civilian deaths in the Gaza Strip.

The resolution, which had been put forward on behalf of Arab and Muslim countries, garnered a strong majority of 120 votes in the 193-member assembly, with 8 votes against and 45 abstentions.

The resolution calls on UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to make proposals within 60 days “on ways and means for ensuring the safety, protection, and well-being of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation,” including “recommendations regarding an international protection mechanism.”

It also calls for “immediate steps towards ending the closure and the restrictions imposed by Israel on movement and access into and out of the Gaza Strip.”

Palestinians hold funeral for two slain teens

Meanwhile, scores of mourning Palestinians took to the streets of Gaza City on Sunday, holding a funeral procession for two teenagers who were killed in an Israeli airstrike a day earlier.

Witnesses told Reuters that 15-year-old Amir Al-Namara, and 16-year-old Loay Kheil were playing in a half-constructed high-rise that was hit by an Israeli missile. The Israeli military said the building had been used by Hamas for urban warfare training.

Mourners carry the body of Palestinian teenager, who was killed in an Israeli airstrike, during his funeral in Gaza City, Gaza Strip, July 15, 2018. (Photo by Reuters)

"He wasn't carrying a rocket. He was just an innocent kid," said Waleed Al-Namara, one of the teen's grandfather, at the mourning house.

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