Four Israeli soldiers lightly injured in battle, after entering Gaza for the first time in Operation Protective Edge.
The Israeli military says four soldiers have been lightly wounded in fighting in northern Gaza.
The military says the soldiers were hurt during a brief incursion to destroy a rocket launching site. It says they have returned to Israeli territory.
It is the first time that Israeli ground troops are known to have entered Gaza in the current offensive. But the operation was carried out by special forces and did not appear to be the beginning of a broad ground offensive.
An Israeli armoured vehicle drives across a field near central Gaza Strip (Reuters)
Saturday was the bloodiest day since the conflict erupted on Tuesday, with 52 Palestinians killed.
Both sides have dismissed calls for a truce, and Israel continued to build up troops along the Gaza border ahead of a possible ground invasion, warning Palestinians in northern Gaza to evacuate their homes.
With the Palestinian death toll at 157, and with no Israelis killed, the UN Security Council unanimously urged Israel and Hamas to respect “international humanitarian laws” and stop the loss of life.
An injured Palestinian boy is looked after by medics in an ambulance before being given permission to cross into Egypt for treatment (AFP/Getty Images)
The 15-member council urged a return to “calm, and restitution of the November 2012 ceasefire”, referring to Gaza’s last deadly full-scale conflict.
Israel’s aerial campaign – the largest and deadliest since 2012 – saw strikes start early on Saturday, including one that hit a centre for the handicapped, and another that killed two nephews of Gaza’s former Hamas premier, Ismail Haniya.
Rockets fired from Gaza targeted Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, with several intercepted over Israel’s commercial capital and Jerusalem-bound projectiles hitting two southern West Bank cities.
Rockets being fired from the Gaza strip into Israel (AFP/Getty Images)
Hundreds of rockets have so far caused no Israeli deaths, and many have been intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defence system.
An attack on the northern Gaza Strip hit a centre for the handicapped, killing two disabled women and wounding four, the centre’s director said.
“They didn’t understand what was happening and they were so frightened,” Jamila Alaywa said of those inside the care home.
“They fired the rocket and it hit us without any warning.”
Later on Saturday night, an Israeli strike hit the Tuffah district in eastern Gaza City, targeting a home and a mosque and killing 16 people, medics said.
Among the wounded was police chief Tayseer al-Batsh, officials said.
Hamas unleashed a barrage of rocket fire after issuing a rare warning that it planned to fire at the Israeli city of Tel Aviv.
Three rockets apparently targeting Jerusalem fell short, hitting Hebron and Bethlehem, the army and Palestinian security sources said, with no reports of casualties.
Of four fired at Tel Aviv, three were intercepted above the city and another hit open ground south of it, the army said.
Well over 500 projectiles have struck Israel during the conflict, and on Saturday evening two rockets fired from Lebanon hit uninhabited areas in northern Israel, the army said.
Israel responded with artillery fire.