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Israel strike kills 10 in UN school

It is the second such attack on a United Nations (UN) school in less than a week.

Relatives and friends mourn near the body of Hazem Abu Shamalah (unseen), who was killed in shelling after the Israeli military resumed its assault on Gaza, during his funeral in Khan Yunis, in the southern Gaza Strip, 27 July, 2014. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - At least ten people have been killed and about 30 others wounded by an Israeli airstrike on a United Nations (UN) school in southern Gaza on Sunday.

It is the second such attack on a UN school in less than a week.

The United Nations says it has repeatedly informed the Israeli army that it is sheltering thousands of refugees in its schools in Gaza.

More than half a million Gazans have been displaced by the fighting.

Israeli military officials say they are aware of the latest reports of an airstrike on a school and are looking into them.

A Palestinian elderly woman sits crying after an Israeli military strike hit a house, killing at least three members of the Wahdan family, on 3 August, 2014 in the southern Gaza Strip in Jabalia, in the northern Gaza Strip. Picture: AFP.

But in the past Israel has claimed Hamas militants are using schools from where to fire rockets at Israel.

The army is also investigating another strike on Wednesday on a UN school in which twenty people were killed.

Gaza health officials report that 30 other Palestinians died early this morning in Israeli airstrikes in Rafah and Jabalya.

TRUCE EFFORTS

In Cairo, efforts to find a new truce were due to resume on Sunday.

A delegation from Palestinian militant groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad arrived in the Egyptian capital, but a quick breakthrough seemed unlikely in the absence of Israeli representatives.

After accusing Hamas of breaching a US and UN-brokered ceasefire on Friday, Israel said it would not send envoys as scheduled.

In Gaza, Israel intensified attacks in the area of Rafah along the border with Egypt, where 23-year-old officer Hadar Goldin was feared captured there on Friday shortly after what was to have been a 72-hour truce began.

A Palestinian boy inspects the damage inside a house that was hit by an Israeli military strike killing at least three members of the Wahdan family, on 3 August, 2014 in the southern Gaza Strip in Jabalia, in the northern Gaza Strip. Picture: AFP.

The military later said Goldin, who was dragged by militants into a tunnel after two of his comrades were killed by a suicide bomber, had also died in action.

"The findings on the ground, the items that we found led us to the conclusion that he was killed in the initial attack," Lerner, the military spokesman, said.

More than 30 tunnels and dozens of access shafts have been unearthed and were being blown up.

"We have proceeded with the mission in order to eliminate those (tunnels) that we have found and we expect to complete that within a short period of time, probably within the next 24 hours or so," he said.

Israel began its air and naval offensive against Gaza on 8 July following a surge of cross-border rocket salvoes by Hamas and other guerrillas, later escalating the operation into ground incursions.

The fighting on Sunday pushed the Gaza death toll given by Palestinian officials to 1,726, most of them civilians. Israel has confirmed that 64 soldiers have died in combat, while Palestinian rockets have also killed three civilians in Israel.

At least 30 Palestinians in Rafah were killed by Israeli fire on Sunday, including nine from the same family, hospital officials said.