Gaza toll climbs as Israeli airstrikes, militant rocket barrage continue

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Associated Press

Posted on November 18, 2012 at 3:00 PM

Updated Sunday, Nov 18 at 7:04 PM

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he's "deeply saddened" by the deaths of the civilians in Gaza and "alarmed" by the continuing rocket fire against Israeli towns.

International efforts to broker a cease-fire between Israel and Palestinian militants appear likely to intensify after an Israeli missile ripped through a two-story home in Gaza City today.

A Gaza health official says at least 11 civilians were killed, including four young children and an 80-year-old woman. It's the single deadliest attack of Israel's offensive against the militants and their on-going barrage of rockets aimed at Israeli cities.

Militants kept up the barrage today, firing more than 100 rockets, including two at Tel Aviv.

Egyptian security officials say an Israeli envoy arrived in Cairo today for talks on a ceasefire.

Speaking to reporters on a trip to Thailand, President Barack Obama said a truce will have to start with an end to the rocket attacks.

Sound:

%@AP Links

173-c-09-(Aron Heller, AP correspondent)-"days of fighting"-AP correspondent Aron Heller reports an Israeli missile has flattened a two-story house in a residential neighborhood of Gaza City and there are civilian casualties. ((watch for dating)) (18 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *173 (11/18/12)>> 00:09 "days of fighting"

174-c-16-(Aron Heller, AP correspondent)-"the dynamic completely"-AP correspondent Aron Heller reports Sunday's Israeli missile attack could raise international pressure for a halt to the offensive. (18 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *174 (11/18/12)>> 00:16 "the dynamic completely"

175-c-14-(Aron Heller, AP correspondent)-"from residential neighborhoods"-AP correspondent Aron Heller reports Hamas has been known to fire missles from residential neighborhoods. (18 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *175 (11/18/12)>> 00:14 "from residential neighborhoods"

178-a-17-(Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak (EH'-hud bah-RAHK'), with reporters)-"the whole country"-Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak says the Israeli Iron Dome is the best interception system on earth. ((note length of cut)) (18 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *178 (11/18/12)>> 00:17 "the whole country"

181-r-19-(Sound of shouting and man crying 'Allahu Akbar' meaning 'God is great' in Arabic, at site of airstrike)--Sound of shouting and man crying 'Allahu Akbar' meaning 'God is great' in Arabic, as rescuers pull out a child's body from the rubble after an Israeli missile has hit a building in Gaza City. (18 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *181 (11/18/12)>> 00:19

176-a-16-(Israeli President Shimon Peres, at joint news conference with French foreign minister)-"going at school"-Israeli President Shimon Peres says it's "hard to understand" why Hamas has targeted Israeli children. (18 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *176 (11/18/12)>> 00:16 "going at school"

APPHOTO AXLP114: Residents inspect the damage at a house after a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from inside the Gaza Strip, landed at the community of Ofakim, in southern Israel, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. According to reports , two Israelis were wounded and their condition is unknown. Israel launched the operation last Wednesday by assassinating Hamas' military chief and carrying out dozens of airstrikes on rocket launchers and weapons storage sites. Over the weekend, the operation began to target Hamas government installations as well, including the offices of its prime minister and attacks on a major training base and the two media centers. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis) (18 Nov 2012)

<<APPHOTO AXLP114 (11/18/12)>>

APPHOTO AXLP115: A resident walks outside a damaged house after a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from inside the Gaza Strip, landed at the community of Ofakim, in southern Israel, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. Israel launched the operation last Wednesday by assassinating Hamas' military chief and carrying out dozens of airstrikes on rocket launchers and weapons storage sites. Over the weekend, the operation began to target Hamas government installations as well, including the offices of its prime minister and attacks on a major training base and the two media centers. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis) (18 Nov 2012)

<<APPHOTO AXLP115 (11/18/12)>>

APPHOTO AXLP108: Residents inspect the damage at a house after a rocket fired by Palestinian militants from inside the Gaza Strip, landed at the community of Ofakim, in southern Israel, Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012. According to recent reports, two Israelis were wounded and their condition is unknown. Israel launched the operation last Wednesday by assassinating Hamas' military chief and carrying out dozens of airstrikes on rocket launchers and weapons storage sites. Over the weekend, the operation began to target Hamas government installations as well, including the offices of its prime minister and attacks on a major training base and the two media centers. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis) (18 Nov 2012)

<<APPHOTO AXLP108 (11/18/12)>>

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