Gaza militants kill three Israelis with rocket fire

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GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Militants in the Gaza Strip pounded southern Israel with rocket fire today, killing three people as the Israeli military pressed forward with a second day of intense air raids and naval attacks on militant targets. With Israel threatening to invade the Palestinian territory, the heaviest fighting between Israel and Hamas in four years showed no signs of letting up.

The fighting, which began Wednesday when Israel assassinated Hamas’ military chief, brought life to a standstill on both sides of the border.

Meanwhile, Egypt’s Islamist president vowed to work to stop Israel’s campaign against Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, calling it an “unacceptable aggression” and ordering his prime minister to travel to the territory in a show of support.

Still, Mohammed Morsi took a low-key tone in his first public comments on the crisis. He expressed support for the Palestinians in Gaza but avoided sharp condemnations of Israel and said had spoken with President Barak Obama about how “peace and security could be achieved for everyone without aggression.”

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