BEIRUT, January 3 (RIA Novosti) - The death toll from Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip rose to 440 Palestinians with some 2,285 people injured as the conflict entered its second week, Lebanon's Al-Manar TV reported on Saturday.
Over the past week Israel's controversial bombing campaign has destroyed more than 750 facilities in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, which according to Israel were connected to terrorist activities.
In response Palestinian militants launched 500 rockets on Israeli border towns killing four people.
Analysts believe that Israel is preparing to launch a ground assault on the Gaza Strip amid concerns of a humanitarian catastrophe in the densely-populated region.
Robert Serry, UN special coordinator for the Middle East said on Friday "We are gravely concerned" that a ground operation "would just mean another cycle of violence and a further escalation of the conflict. "It is absolutely imperative now that we find an immediate and lasting way out to avoid an even deeper and deadlier conflict," he said.
The Russian embassy in Egypt said on Saturday some 60 tons of humanitarian aid, including foodstuffs, medicine, bedding and tents, had been delivered to the Gaza Strip.
And two flights carrying 102 Russians and 76 nationals from Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Belarus and Moldavia evacuated from Gaza Friday arrived in Moscow earlier on Saturday.
Some 250 Russians, mainly the wives and children of Palestinians who studied at Russian universities, live in the Gaza Strip.