Gaza death toll rises to 815

GAZA: Israeli fire on Gaza killed a pregnant woman and a senior Islamic Jihad figure Friday, taking the Palestinian death toll from 18 days of violence to 815, emergency services said.

Surgeons saved the life of the 23-year-old woman’s unborn child after the air strike hit a house in the central Gaza town of Deir al-Balah, emergency services spokesman Ashraf al-Qudra said.

Another air raid killed a senior spokesman for Islamic Jihad, the second largest militant group in Gaza after Hamas, which dominates the territory.

Salah Hasanein’s sons, 12 and 15, were also killed in the strike in the southern city of Rafah, Qudra said.

Islamic Jihad confirmed the deaths.

The strikes took the Palestinian death toll in Gaza since Israel launched its offensive on July 8 to 815.

Nearly 100 Palestinians were killed on Thursday, one of the bloodiest days of the conflict.

Rockets and mortar rounds fired into Israel have killed three civilians — two Israelis and a Thai farm worker — and fighting in and around Gaza has killed 32 Israeli soldiers.

It is the bloodiest conflict around the blockaded Palestinian territory since 2008-9.

Human rights watchdogs say that some 80 percent of the Palestinian dead have been civilians, many of them women or children.