Shelling of UN school kills 15 as Gaza war rages

Gaza conflict

Credit: AFP/Getty Images

A picture taken from the Israeli border with the Gaza Strip shows smoke billowing from the coastal Palestinian enclave following an Israeli air strike on July 29, 2014. (JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images)

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Associated Press

Posted on July 30, 2014 at 8:01 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 30 at 10:12 AM

JEBALIYA REFUGEE CAMP, Gaza Strip (AP) — The Israeli military is offering an explanation for the shelling of a U.N. school in Gaza that was packed with Palestinians fleeing the war with Hamas.

Palestinian health officials say tank shells tore through the walls of two classrooms, killing 15 people and wounding another 90. The Israeli military says soldiers fired after mortar shells were launched from near the school.

Health officials elsewhere say Israeli airstrikes and shelling killed 40 other Palestinians today, including multiple members of two families struck in their homes. The dead include four children.

War planes struck dozens of locations in Gaza, including five mosques the military claims were being used by militants.

The total number of Palestinians killed since the start of fighting July 8 is now approaching 1,300. Israel has lost 53 soldiers and three civilians.

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