Hamas unleashed a fresh barrage of deadly rocket fire towards Israel Wednesday in retaliation for the levelling of a 14-story building in Gaza by Israel, which ruled out an imminent ceasefire.
Hamas said the volley of 130 rockets, which killed a six-year-old boy in southern Israel and set off air raid warnings up to Tel Aviv, was a response to the destruction of Gaza City's Al-ٍShorouk tower.
The tower, which spewed black smoke from bright embers following the strike, was described by Israel as housing the Hamas intelligence service.
Israel's Defence Minister Benny Gantz had earlier vowed more attacks on Hamas and other Islamist militant groups in Gaza to bring "total, long-term quiet" before considering a ceasefire.
"This is just the beginning," warned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "We'll deliver them blows they haven't dreamt of."
Gaza militants have launched more than 1,000 rockets since Monday, said Israel's army, which has carried out more than 350 air strikes on the crowded coastal enclave, targeting what it calls military sites.
The most intense hostilities in seven years have killed at least 56 people in Gaza, including 14 children, and seven in Israel, including a soldier and one Indian national, since Monday.
The six-year-old boy died after a rocket struck his home in Sderot, where four other people were being treated for injuries, the United Hatzalah volunteer rescue agency said.
Three Palestinians have been killed in West Bank clashes since Monday. And at least 230 Palestinians and 110 Israelis have been wounded.
The bloodshed was triggered by weekend unrest at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque compound, which is sacred to both Muslims and Jews.