At least 7 Palestinians, 1 Israeli dead as Israel-Gaza tensions escalate

At least 7 Palestinians, 1 Israeli dead as Israel-Gaza tensions escalate

Tensions continued to rise Sunday as civilian casualties increased on both sides of the border after some 430 rockets were fired into Israel from Gaza in less than 24 hours, in one of the most intense flareups of violence in the region in years.

The barrage of rockets from Gaza started Saturday morning, prompting Israel to retaliate with airstrikes.

Seven Palestinians, including a pregnant mother and her baby, were killed and fifty more have been hurt in the Palestinian enclave, according to Ashraf al Qudra, a Palestinian Health Ministry spokesman, who named the dead on Facebook, NBC reports.

Israeli authorities said that an early morning rocket killed an Israeli man Sunday outside a home in the coastal city of Ashkelon. More than 80 others have been injured — with many suffering from stress, according to the MDA, Israel's emergency health service.

The man is the first Israeli to be killed by rocket fire in the Israel-Palestine conflict since 2014, according to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

Rocket fire from Gaza is being partially blocked by Israel's Iron Dome aerial defense system. Spokesman for the IDF, Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, said the air shield "saved countless lives," intercepting 150 rockets.

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