Palestinian Rocket Aimed at Jerusalem for First Time

7:02 PM, Nov 16, 2012   |    comments
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GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) - Israel is moving a step closer to a possible ground offensive in Gaza, calling up 16,000 reservists.

This, on a day that saw Hamas rocket squads display their expanded reach -- taking aim at Jerusalem for the first time, after earlier targeting Tel Aviv. Air raid sirens sounded today in both cities.

Over the past three days, Israel has pounded suspected rocket launching sites and other Hamas targets in Gaza with scores of airstrikes, while Hamas has fired more than 450 rockets toward Israel. Hamas says the rockets aimed at Jerusalem and Tel Aviv today were made in Gaza, and have a range of about 50 miles.

At least 23 Palestinians, including 12 militants and six children, have been reported killed in the fighting, along with three Israelis.

Israel's military says no decision has been made on whether to send in ground troops, or how long the Israeli offensive will last. Along the border, Israeli tanks, armored vehicles and military bulldozers are parked in rows.

The violence is putting further strains on Israeli relations with Egypt. The Islamist government in Cairo sent the country's prime minister to Gaza to show solidarity, and he called today for an end to the Israeli offensive. Thousands protested the Israeli action today in Egypt's two largest cities.

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