Terror as Israel, Hamas trade fire

06:56, Nov 22 2012
Gaza conflict
Smoke trails are seen as two rockets are launched from the central Gaza Strip towards Israel.
Gaza conflict
A Palestinian stone-thrower uses a sling to throw back a tear gas canister fired by Israeli security forces. The clashes broke out following a protest against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
Israeli soldiers check their weapons at a staging area near the border with the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
Palestinian stone-throwers holds a Hamas flag as he climbs a street pole during clashes with Israeli security forces. The clashes broke out following a protest against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
Israeli border policemen detain a Palestinian stone-thrower during clashes against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
A Palestinian stone-thrower runs after Israeli security forces fired tear gas during clashes against Israel's military operation in Gaza.
Gaza conflict
Black smoke rises after an Israeli air strike in the central Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
A Palestinian firefighter tries to extinguish a fire after an Israeli air strike.
Gaza conflict
An Iron Dome launcher fires an interceptor rocket near the Israeli city of Ashkelon.
Gaza conflict
A Palestinian demonstrator wearing a rosary holds a stone during minor clashes with Israeli troops in protest against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
An Israeli police explosives expert removes the remains of a rocket fired by Palestinian militants in Gaza after it landed in a village near the southern city of Ashdod.
Gaza conflict
Israelis take cover in a large concrete pipe used as a bomb shelter during a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (L) meets with Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr in Cairo. Ban is in the region to help talks on the Gaza conflict.
Gaza conflict
Hamas's leader in exile Khaled Meshaal, seen at a news conference in Cairo, says Israel must take the first step if it wants a truce in the conflict in Gaza.
Gaza conflict
A Hasidic Jewish man holds an Israeli flag as he dances with Israeli troops during a visit to support the soldiers, near the border with the Gaza Strip.
Gaza conflict
Palestinians evacuate a wounded man after an Israeli air strike on a building that also houses international media offices in Gaza City.
A Palestinian woman cries next to a relative's house after it was destroyed in what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike.
A Palestinian woman cries next to a relative's house after it was destroyed in what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike.
A Palestinian woman cries next to a relative's house after it was destroyed in what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike.
An Israeli border policeman holds his weapon as he is silhouetted during clashes with stone-throwing Palestinians in the West Bank village in Nabi Saleh.
A Palestinian woman cries next to a relative's house after it was destroyed in what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike.
Smoke rises after what witnesses was said an Israeli air strike in Gaza City.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrives in Tel Aviv, Israel, for talks about the Gaza situation.
Israeli border policemen carry a stone-throwing Palestinian protester as they detain him during clashes against Israel's military operation in the Gaza Strip.
A picture of a child lies among the rubble of a destroyed house, after what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike, in Gaza City.

Nowhere in Gaza is safe from Israel's bombs, says a New Zealand activist living there.

The Israeli assault on the Gaza Strip is going into its seventh day, with officials signalling a land invasion could be imminent though they would prefer a diplomatic solution to end Palestinian rocket fire.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is being sent to the Middle East for talks with Israeli, Palestinian and Egyptian leaders to seek a de-escalation of the violence in Gaza.

Gaza attacks
RESCUE: An injured man is rushed away from the scene of a bomb in Gaza City.

Palestinian rocket fire and Israeli air strikes have killed more than 100 people in the conflict.

Israel has been firing rockets into the Gaza Strip in an attempt to end months of rocket fire out of the Hamas-ruled territory.

Speaking via Skype while military drones could be heard hovering over her house, activist and freelance journalist Julie Webb-Pullman, who has been living in Gaza since June last year, said it was an "absolutely terrifying" place to be.

"We are being rocked by bombs every 15 minutes ... I was just woken up at 6am by a massive explosion that apparently killed three people.

"The whole building rocked so it must have been about 500 yards from my house."

Webb-Pullman said the reality of the attacks was far from what was being reported.

"Nowhere in Gaza is safe, people are being killed just walking down the street and you have to go to the shop and you have to do things like that. "

Three Israeli civilians and 108 Palestinians have so far been killed. Gaza officials say more than half of those killed in the enclave were civilians, 27 of them children, Reuters said.

Webb-Pullman said yesterday a group of people were targeted by an Israeli drone which killed a nine-year-old girl and her brother.

"It's a crime against humanity what's occurring, kids are being targeted, [Sunday] alone 31 people were killed - 10 of those children, six were women and five were babies and toddlers," she said.

"They are not military targets, they are civilians. Israel is committing war crimes plain and simple."

Webb-Pullman said a 30:1 ratio of Gazans being killed to Israelis made it clear "who was the aggressor in the matter".

Palestinians were being pushed into a corner, she said.

"And if you're pushed into a corner you do what you can. [Palestinians] will continue resisting with every last breath in their body, and if a person in Gaza is killed by an Israeli that just guarantees another 50 to replace them.

"Every time somebody is killed it enrages the population so much that anybody who was on the fence before then becomes extremely motivated to defend the blood of their dead."

New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has confirmed only one New Zealander registered as being in Gaza, and has issued an "extreme risk" advisory warning all New Zealanders to leave the country.

Webb-Pullman said she wouldn't be going anywhere, despite two recent attacks on media buildings in the last two days.

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