Gaza braces for invasion as death toll mounts

Sunday, November 18, 2012
By Paul Martin

White House calls for diplomacy after Israeli air strikes destroy Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh’s headquarters

Harriet Sherwood and Peter Beaumont
Saturday 17 November 2012

Gaza is braced for a ground invasion by Israeli forces following intensified bombing that included the flattening of the headquarters of the Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh.

As the Israeli military began the emergency call-up of up to 75,000 reservists, leaders from Turkey, Egypt and Qatar met in Cairo to discuss ways of ending the escalating violence. Since Wednesday Israel has launched more than 950 air strikes on the coastal Palestinian territory, targeting weaponry and flattening militant homes and headquarters.

The raids have continued past midnight into Sunday. Witnesses said one targeted a building in Gaza City housing the offices of local Arab media, wounding three journalists from al-Quds television, a Lebanon-based station that Israel sees as pro-Hamas. The building is also used by foreign news outlets including Germany’s ARD, Kuwait TV, the Italian RAI and others.

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