Update 7:30 p.m.: Israel News Feed reports rocket fire may be responsible for multiple power outages in northern Israel. Rockets were fired from Syria.
Reports of power outage in multiple areas in northern Israel, possible out of latest rocket attacks.
â€” Israel News Feed (@IsraelHatzolah) August 23, 2014
The Israeli army destroyed a 12-story building with 44 apartments in Gaza City Saturday, injuring at least 22 people, 11 of whom were children, the Associated Press reported. This was the first time the Israelis collapsed a multistory building in the seven weeks of “Operation Protective Edge.” Other attacks in the Strip left at least 10 dead Saturday.
Israel said the apartment building was a legitimate target because it housed a Hamas command center. It also said a warning shot was fired five minutes prior to the missile strike. Palestinian officials said at least 44 families lived in the building.
"People started shouting Allahu Akbar, and women and kids were screaming," area resident Maher Abu Sedo told the AP. "This is crazy. The state of Israel has resorted to madness. In less than a minute, 44 families have become displaced. ... They lost everything, their house, their money, their memories and their security."
Israel sent text messages and leaflets to residents in Gaza, warning them "every house from which militant activity is carried out, will be targeted" and urging them to stay away from Hamas militants.
We've distributed leaflets over Gaza warning the residents to keep away from terrorist sites and activities. pic.twitter.com/kz9agz9TVV
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) August 23, 2014
Also Saturday, Hamas executed four Palestinians suspected of working with Israel, the Palestinian news agency Ma’an reported. The militants Friday executed 18 people for the same reason. Collaboration with Israel is an offense punishable by death in the Palestinian legal code; however, Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas has prohibited the death penalty since 2005.
After a day of fighting, Hamas officials said they would sign any Palestinian bid to join the International Criminal Court. If such a bid does happen, it could result in either Israel or Hamas or both getting accused of war crimes.
Fighting between Israel and Hamas resumed Tuesday after the breakdown of yet another set of truce negotiations in Cairo. The two sides traded blame for violating the cease-fire, but both continued to trade fire well into the end of the week. At least 86 Palestinians and a 4-year-old Israeli boy have been killed since the collapse of a nearly nine-day cease-fire Tuesday. The Israeli army said at least 525 rockets have been fired at Israel since Tuesday.
Haaretz reported Saturday delegations from both Israel and Palestine were preparing to resume negotiations in Cairo. Neither side, however, confirmed the report and fighting continued.
"Fighting is the strategy of the Palestinian people, as long as Israel rejects the Palestinian demands,” Hamas top official Mashir Al-Masri said. “The resumption of talks is conditional on acceptance of the Palestinian demands without evasions, maneuvers or foot-dragging. We want to know in advance that pressure will be exerted on Israel, to force it to accept all our demands."
Israel sounds equally confident.
"In the end we will win," Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said Saturday. "This is a test of staying power and strength.”
More than 2,100 people, including 500 children, have been killed in Gaza since July 8. Sixty-eight Israelis have been killed, including a 4-year-old boy.
A video of the apartment building collapse can be seen here.