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At Least 100 Killed, Gaza’s Only Power Station Hit In Airstrikes

Hamas reportedly rejects call for cease-fire following a barrage of strikes on Tuesday. “We need to be prepared for a protracted campaign in Gaza,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warns.

1. Update – July 29, 10:03 a.m. ET

2. Hamas reportedly rejected Palestinian officials’ call for a 24-hour cease-fire on Tuesday following a night of fighting that killed at least 100 and destroyed Gaza’s only power station.

Mohammed Salem / Reuters

Above, a Palestinian firefighter at the power station in Gaza.

3. The fuel depot at Gaza’s only power station was set ablaze following one of the most intense nights of shelling since Israel launched Operation Protective Edge 22 days ago.

Ahmed Zakot / Reuters

Witnesses said that Israeli tanks hit the depot on Tuesday, taking out the power station and cutting electricity to Gaza City and other parts of the densely populated Palestinian encalve, according to Reuters.

Plant Director Mohamed Al-Sharif told reporters, “The power plant is finished,” adding that the local fire brigade did not have the resources to deal with the blaze.

Destruction of Gaza power plant = more than blackouts. It's sewage & water pumps not working, no refrigeration, hospital equip in jeopardy.

— sheeraf (@Sheera Frenkel)

The conflict escalated on Monday night after the Israeli government rejected a cease-fire agreement proposed by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry over the weekend.

Local reports said it was the fiercest night of bombing thus far. Officials in Gaza said at least 100 Palestinians were killed during Tuesday’s fighting.

8. At least 1,156, Palestinians have died over the past weeks, according to Gaza Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Kidra. Israel has reported 53 soldiers and three civilians killed, according to the Associated Press.

Ibraheem Abu Mustafa / Reuters

Officials say the damages could take up to 1 year to repair- supposing Israel grants entry to engineers & spare parts

— Belalmd12 (@Belal - Gaza)

10. Israel claims 150 targets were attacked overnight, according to Haaretz. The house of Hamas deputy leader Ismail Haniyeh was among those hit.

pics of Hamas deputy leader Ismail Haniyeh's house partly destroyed by Israeli airstrik בית איסמעיל הנייה נהרס חלקית

— galberger (@Gal Berger)

some more pics of Hamas deputy leader Ismail Haniyeh's house in Gaza

— galberger (@Gal Berger)

12. Also hit were the offices used by the Hamas-run Al-Aqsa TV station, according to the BBC.

Damage to building housing Al Aqsa TV which was hit by an airstrike overnight - one of 60 carried out by IDF #Gaza

— katebt3000 (@Kate Benyon-Tinker)

Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu warned that the Gaza campaign would be “prolonged”, and would not be complete until Hamas’ network of underground tunnels was destroyed.

14. Time lapse shows neighborhood in Gaza flattened:

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Francis Whittaker is the overnight homepage editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact this reporter at francis.whittaker@buzzfeed.com