Key Dates In The Gaza-Israel Conflict
Updated: 11:43am UK, Thursday 24 July 2014
Israel's ground offensive in the Gaza Strip continues with forces attempting to destroy Hamas' weapons arsenal and rocketing-firing capabilities.
Here are the key events from the fighting that preceded and have followed Israel's operation:
July 8 - Israel launches "Operation Protective Edge" in a bid to quell near-daily militant rocket attacks in the aftermath of the abduction and killing of a Palestinian teenager in what appeared to be a revenge attack for the seizure and slaying of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank in June.
July 9 - Hamas rockets rain deep into Israel as the military pummels Palestinian targets. The military says 74 rockets landed in Israel, including in the northern city of Hadera, the deepest rocket strike ever from Gaza. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says Hamas will pay a "heavy price".
July 10 - Israel intensifies its bombardment. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urges an immediate ceasefire but neither side shows much interest in halting the fighting.
July 11 - Mr Netanyahu vows to press forward with a broad military offensive. The Israeli military says it has hit more than 1,100 targets, mostly rocket-launching sites, while Palestinian militants fired more than 600 rockets at Israel. The Lebanese military says militants there fired three rockets toward Israel and the Israelis retaliated with about 25 artillery shells.
July 12 - Gaza City becomes a virtual ghost town as streets empty, shops close and hundreds of thousands of people keep close to home. The death toll rises to more than 156 Palestinians after more than 1,200 Israeli air strikes.
July 13 - Israel widens its campaign, targeting civilian institutions with suspected Hamas ties, and briefly deploys ground troops inside Gaza to raid a rocket launching site. Four Israeli soldiers are hurt during the brief incursion. Egypt, a key mediator between Israel and Hamas, continues to work behind the scenes.
July 14 - Israel says it's downed an unmanned drone along its southern coastline. Egypt presents a cease-fire plan that is praised by President Barack Obama at a White House dinner celebrating the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
July 15 - Israeli Cabinet accepts Egypt's truce plan, halting fire for six hours but Hamas rejects the proposal, instead unleashing more rockets at Israel and prompting Israel to resume heavy bombardment. Rocket fire kills an Israeli man delivering food to soldiers, the first Israeli fatality in the fighting. Four Gaza boys, all cousins, are killed on a beach by shells fired from a navy ship.
July 16 - Hamas fires dozens of rockets into Israel, vowing not to agree to a ceasefire until its demands are met. The Gaza Interior Ministry's website says Israeli warplanes carried out dozens of airstrikes, targeting 30 houses, including those of four senior Hamas leaders. Later, both Israel and Hamas agree to a five-hour UN brokered "humanitarian" pause to start the following day.
July 17 - Both sides trade fire in run-up to the brief truce, which Gazans use to restock on food and other supplies. Israel says it foiled an attack by 13 Gaza militants who infiltrated through a tunnel. Fierce fighting resumes after the truce expires, including an airstrike that kills three Palestinian children. After nightfall, the Israeli military launches a ground invasion into Gaza Strip.
July 18 - Eight members of the same Palestinian family - two men, two women and four children - are killed by Israeli tank fire as the ground offensive to date claims the lives of 51 Palestinians and one Israeli soldier.
July 19 - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he wants to meet both sides to try to secure a truce as Israel pledges to step up its ground offensive. Hamas says its fighters are "behind enemy lines" as security alerts are triggered in southern Israel.
July 20 - Fresh airstrikes, artillery shelling and gun battles overnight kill 12 Palestinians and two more Israeli soldiers, as Israel intensifies its ground offensive in Gaza. Israeli minister Naftali Bennett defends the ground offensive in Gaza and accuses Hamas of "self-genocide" by using women and children as human shields.
July 21 - Another airstrike kills 26 members of the same family, while seven more Israeli soldiers die in gun battles with Hamas fighters. Thirty of those wounded in the attack are reportedly medical staff.
July 22 - The Palestinian leadership proposes a ceasefire plan to mediators in Egypt which would be followed by five days of negotiations to stop the fighting which has claimed the lives of more than 600 Palestinians, many of them women and children, and 29 Israelis, including 27 soldiers.
July 23 - An international inquiry into Israel's actions in Gaza is launched, after the UN's Human Rights Commissioner says there is a "strong possibility" the country is guilty of war crimes. Several major airlines from the US, Europe and Canada suspend flights to and from Israel after a rocket fired from Gaza lands near Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion international airport.
July 24 - British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond warns Benjamin Netanyahu the West is losing sympathy for Israel amid the rising number of civilian deaths during its offensive in Gaza, as international efforts to end the conflict intensify. However, hopes of an effective ceasefire quickly diminish after Israel vows to continue hunting Palestinian cross-border tunnels under any humanitarian truce, while Hamas also rejects a truce without the lifting of Israel's eight-year blockade of Gaza.