Watch: Moment Israel strikes Gaza as they launch ‘week of operations’

It came as Israel said it had arrested 19 Islamic Jihad members in the occupied West Bank, where Israeli troops also arrested the group’s West Bank commander, Bassem al-Saadi.

The arrest of al-Saadi prompted furious protests from Islamic Jihad leaders in Gaza and threats towards Israel, which the Israeli military said was what prompted Friday’s “pre-emptive” airstrikes on Gaza.

At noon on Saturday, Palestinian officials announced that Gaza’s only power plant had closed down, jeopardising electricity supplies for the Gaza Strip’s 2.3m residents.

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