The Israeli air force bombed a mosque in the northern Gaza Strip on Saturday, killing at least seven Palestinians including a child, Hamas said. At least 50 people were hurt, Hamas amd medical officials said, according to Reuters.
Meanwhile, Israeli artillery shelled the Gaza Strip, stepping up the offensive against Hamas as tanks and troops waited on the border for a possible ground offensive. Just before nightfall Israel launched artillery fire on Gaza for the first time in the offensive. The barrage caused a large blast in Gaza City as well as a series of blasts along the frontier.
Earlier, Israeli warplanes also hit a private Palestinian college called the American School, killing a guard. The Israeli military said the school was a hiding place for Hamas fighters and a base for firing rockets.
At least 435 Palestinians have been killed in the offensive and more than 2,000 wounded.
On its part, the Hamas cabinet said on Saturday the Israeli campaign would not "change realities in the Gaza Strip". "Whoever thought a change in the political area could come through the bombs of planes and the tanks and without dialogue is an illusionist," it said in a statement after meeting in Gaza.