GAZA CITY, Aug 4 (AP): Israeli forces were conducting house-to-house searches in the southern Gaza Strip early Friday after a day of airstrikes that killed eight Palestinians, the latest stage in Israel's monthlong offensive against militants.
Two more were killed at daybreak Friday, hospital officials said, apparently by a tank shell fired at their house. Another was seriously wounded in the shelling, they said. The military had no immediate comment.
Dozens of Israeli tanks held positions Thursday in the southern the Gaza Strip, and aircraft fired missiles in heavy fighting that mirrored the Israeli offensive against Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.
Palestinian officials said an 8-year-old boy was among those killed in the offensive.
Despite Israeli claims that they were pulling out of the territory, residents reported 12 Palestinians were arrested in house-to-house pre-dawn searches, and Israeli forces were preparing to destroy a house.
Israeli aircraft also hit two houses in Gaza City with missiles early Friday. Residents said the military warned occupants to leave before the attacks, and no one was hurt.
As the tanks took up positions, Israeli aircraft fired missiles at groups of gunmen, killing four. The strikes wounded 26 Palestinians, at least 10 of them militants, security and hospital officials said.
Forces later fired a tank shell at residents gathering in the area after daybreak, killing an 8-year-old boy and wounding three people, including a 4-year-old girl, hospital and security officials said. The bodies of three more dead people were brought to the hospital early Thursday, but they were not believed to be militants, medics said.