A Palestinian mother and her four children were killed yesterday as they ate breakfast at home during an Israeli military attack in the Gaza Strip.
The violence came despite efforts led by the Egyptians to arrange a ceasefire between Israel and the militant groups in Hamas-controlled Gaza.
Shortly after 8am yesterday, Meyasar Abu Me’tiq was in her home in the eastern town of Beit Hanoun with her six children. Israeli military vehicles had crossed into Gaza on one of their now frequent incursions and there were reports of heavy gunfire in the area. The Israeli military said it launched an air strike against two men who it said were gunmen approaching the Israeli soldiers.
Shrapnel from the attack appears to have severely damaged the Abu Me’tiq house, and particularly the front door. Four of the children were killed immediately, according to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights: Saleh, five, Rudeina, four, Hana, three and one-year-old Mes’id. The children’s mother, Meyasar, 40, was severely injured and died later. The two other children and 10 others who were nearby were also injured.