Israel military says early Monday airstrikes on Gaza destroyed nine miles of militant tunnels

The military also said the strikes destroyed the homes of nine Hamas commanders.

Updated: May 17, 2021 - 9:26am

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The Israeli military early Monday launched airstrikes on the Gaza Strip and said the missions destroyed 9 miles of militant tunnels, as diplomats worldwide try to end the week of deadly fighting, with the possibility of a cease-fire.

The military also said the strikes destroyed the homes of nine commanders for Hamas, with whom Israel is fighting.

The latest attacks killed a local Gaza leader of the Islamic Jihad militant group, according to the Israeli military, which blamed him for some of the thousands of rocket attacks launched at Israel, according to the Associated Press.

The airstrike Monday came as Hamas continues to fire rockets from Gaza into Israel. 

The war broke out May 10, when the Hamas militant group fired long-range rockets at Jerusalem after weeks of clashes in the holy city between Palestinian protesters and Israeli police. The protests were focused on the heavy-handed policing of a flashpoint sacred site during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan and the threatened eviction of dozens of Palestinian families by Jewish settlers, the wire service also reports. 

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