The Latest: Gathering of Muslim nations condemns Israel

Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization chant anti-Israel slogans during a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, early Monday, May 10, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday. On Friday, more than 200 Palestinians were wounded in clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and elsewhere in Jerusalem, drawing condemnations from Israel's Arab allies and calls for calm from the United States, Europe and the United Nations. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel) © Provided by Associated Press Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization chant anti-Israel slogans during a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, early Monday, May 10, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday. On Friday, more than 200 Palestinians were wounded in clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and elsewhere in Jerusalem, drawing condemnations from Israel's Arab allies and calls for calm from the United States, Europe and the United Nations. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Latest on confrontations between Israelis and Palestinians, sparked by weeks of tensions in contested Jerusalem and as Israel has signaled it's widening its military campaign:

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — A gathering of representatives of Muslim nations has condemned Israel for the outbreak of violence in the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem, one of the holiest sites in Islam.

The emergency meeting of the 57-member Organization of Islamic Cooperation was held on Tuesday to present a unified response from the Muslim world to the soaring tensions between Israel and the Palestinians and the latest violent confrontations in Jerusalem.

In a communiqué, the meeting denounced Israel’s “continuous violations” of the sanctity of Al-Aqsa Mosque, “barbaric attacks” against worshippers and movement restrictions on Palestinians at the compound. It said that it considered the Israeli actions a “provocation of the feelings of Muslims around the world and serious violation of international law.”

Rockets are launched from Gaza Strip to Israel, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa) © Provided by Associated Press Rockets are launched from Gaza Strip to Israel, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)

It called on the international community to hold Israel liable for the escalation and to press it to halt attacks that threaten “the security and stability of the region.” It also reaffirmed the long-standing Arab stance of support for an independent Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital.

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ANKARA, Turkey — The office of Turkey's president says he is engaged in intense telephone diplomacy in a bid to end Israel’s use of force against the Palestinians.

Since late Monday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has spoken to Malaysia’s king and the leaders of Qatar, Kuwait and Jordan, as he seeks a strong stance by Muslim nations against Israel, according to Erdogan’s office.

The Turkish president, who has has strongly denounced Israel’s actions against Palestinians at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound during the fasting month of Ramadan, has also spoken to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas chief, Ismail Haniyeh.

Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization chant anti-Israel slogans during a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, late Sunday, May 9, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday. On Friday, more than 200 Palestinians were wounded in clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and elsewhere in Jerusalem, drawing condemnations from Israel's Arab allies and calls for calm from the United States, Europe and the United Nations. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel) © Provided by Associated Press Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization chant anti-Israel slogans during a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, late Sunday, May 9, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday. On Friday, more than 200 Palestinians were wounded in clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and elsewhere in Jerusalem, drawing condemnations from Israel's Arab allies and calls for calm from the United States, Europe and the United Nations. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

The latest round of fighting comes as Turkey has reportedly been seeking to restore ties with Israel. The two countries withdrew their ambassadors in 2018, after the United States moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, sparking mass protests by Palestinians.

Late on Monday, thousands of protesters marched to Israel’s embassy in Ankara and the consulate in Istanbul to protest Israel, ignoring Turkey’s COVID-19 restrictions.

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JERUSALEM — The Israeli military says it has assassinated a senior commander of the Islamic Jihad militant group in Gaza on Tuesday,

It said the militant was the head of the Islamic Jihad’s rocket unit and identified him as Samih al-Mamluk. The military said other senior militants in the organization were also killed in the same strike.

Islamic Jihad confirmed the three killed in an airstrike in an apartment in Gaza City were senior members of its armed wing. The militant group vowed retaliation.

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ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s prime minister has denounced Israel’s use of force against Palestinians at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound during the fasting month of Ramadan.

A Palestinian searches for survivors under the rubble of a destroyed rooftop of a residential building which was hit by Israeli missile strikes, at the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, early Tuesday, May. 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra) © Provided by Associated Press A Palestinian searches for survivors under the rubble of a destroyed rooftop of a residential building which was hit by Israeli missile strikes, at the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, early Tuesday, May. 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

Imran Khan said Tuesday that he had asked his foreign minister to contact his Turkish and Saudi counterparts to discuss how to collectively respond.

Earlier, Pakistan’s foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi at a news conference urged the world community to take notice of Israel’s use of force against innocent Palestinians worshippers.

Relatives of 11-year-old Hussain Hamad, who was killed by an explosion during the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, react during his funeral in the family home in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra) © Provided by Associated Press Relatives of 11-year-old Hussain Hamad, who was killed by an explosion during the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, react during his funeral in the family home in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

Under discussion is whether Pakistan, Saudi and Turkish officials should convene the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, a group of Islamic countries.

Pakistan is one of the few countries that have no diplomatic relations with Israel.

Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization hold a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, late Sunday, May 9, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday, when Muslims marked Laylat al-Qadr, or the "night of destiny," the holiest period of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel) © Provided by Associated Press Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization hold a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, late Sunday, May 9, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday, when Muslims marked Laylat al-Qadr, or the "night of destiny," the holiest period of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

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Palestinian mourners carry the body of 11-year-old Hussain Hamad, who was killed by an explosion during the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, out of the morgue during his funeral in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra) © Provided by Associated Press Palestinian mourners carry the body of 11-year-old Hussain Hamad, who was killed by an explosion during the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, out of the morgue during his funeral in Beit Hanoun, northern Gaza Strip, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

JERUSALEM — Israeli media reports that a rocket has struck an empty school in the coastal city of Ashkelon, not far from the Gaza Strip.

Television footage showed thick smoke rising from cars that had caught on fire.

Israel’s Home Front Command had ordered the closure of schools on Monday in the area surrounding the Gaza Strip, including Ashkelon. The move came during the escalation of tension that's built for weeks over contested Jerusalem..

Since Monday, Gaza militants have fired hundreds of rockets toward Israel.

Israel has fired back. An airstrike has hit a high-rise building in the middle of Gaza City. Local media reported that Tuesday’s airstrike killed an unknown number of militants inside.

The strike in the middle class Rimal neighborhood sent terrified residents of the building into the streets. They included screaming women and children, some of whom were barefoot.

Avi Korkas, a municipality worker, examines the damages of a municipality office in charge of an outdoor food market, that was torched after a night of violence between Israeli Arab protesters and Israeli police in the mixed Arab-Jewish town of Lod, central Israel, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Heidi Levine) © Provided by Associated Press Avi Korkas, a municipality worker, examines the damages of a municipality office in charge of an outdoor food market, that was torched after a night of violence between Israeli Arab protesters and Israeli police in the mixed Arab-Jewish town of Lod, central Israel, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Heidi Levine)

Earlier Tuesday, Israel hit a high-rise where it said a Hamas commander was hiding.

Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization hold a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, late Sunday, May 9, 2021, in support of Palestinians. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday, when Muslims marked Laylat al-Qadr, or the "night of destiny," the holiest period of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. On Friday, more than 200 Palestinians were wounded in clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and elsewhere in Jerusalem, drawing condemnations from Israel's Arab allies and calls for calm from the United States, Europe and the United Nations. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel) © Provided by Associated Press Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization hold a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, late Sunday, May 9, 2021, in support of Palestinians. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday, when Muslims marked Laylat al-Qadr, or the "night of destiny," the holiest period of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. On Friday, more than 200 Palestinians were wounded in clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and elsewhere in Jerusalem, drawing condemnations from Israel's Arab allies and calls for calm from the United States, Europe and the United Nations. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

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CAIRO — An Egyptian intelligence official says Egypt is engaged in “intensive” talks with Israel and Gaza militants on reaching a cease-fire to end the latest round of fighting.

The official said the efforts began in late April as the situation in Jerusalem worsened. He said Israeli actions, including the recent storming of the Al-Aqsa mosque and the planed evictions of Palestinian families from their homes in an east Jerusalem neighborhood, have frustrated the mediators.

The official says “the situation is changing rapidly,” but officials nonetheless hope to reach a truce before the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr later this week. Egypt frequently mediates between Israel and Hamas.

A Israeli soldier takes cover as an Iron Dome air defense system launches to intercept a rocket from the Gaza Strip, in Ashkelon, southern Israel, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit) © Provided by Associated Press A Israeli soldier takes cover as an Iron Dome air defense system launches to intercept a rocket from the Gaza Strip, in Ashkelon, southern Israel, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing ongoing diplomatic efforts.

—Samy Magdy in Cairo

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GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — An Israeli airstrike has hit another high-rise building in the middle of Gaza City. Local media reported that Tuesday's airstrike killed an unknown number of militants inside.

Palestinians inspect the rubble of an ice factory and mechanics garages destroyed by an Israeli airstrikes, in Gaza City, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Adel Hana) © Provided by Associated Press Palestinians inspect the rubble of an ice factory and mechanics garages destroyed by an Israeli airstrikes, in Gaza City, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)

But the airstrike in the middle-class Rimal neighborhood in Gaza sent terrified residents of the building into the streets. They included screaming women and children, some of whom were barefoot.

Earlier on Tuesday, Israel hit a high-rise where it said a Hamas commander was hiding. Palestinian health officials said a woman and her 19-year-old disabled son were killed. The fate of the Hamas commander was not immediately known.

Mourners chant Islamic slogans while they carry the body of Amira Soboh, and her 19-year-old disabled son Abdelrahman, who were killed in Israeli airstrikes at their apartment building,  during their funeral at the Shati refugee camp, in Gaza City, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Adel Hana) © Provided by Associated Press Mourners chant Islamic slogans while they carry the body of Amira Soboh, and her 19-year-old disabled son Abdelrahman, who were killed in Israeli airstrikes at their apartment building, during their funeral at the Shati refugee camp, in Gaza City, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)

Since Monday, Gaza militants have also fired hundreds of rockets toward Israel.

The escalation in the conflict was sparked by weeks of tensions in contested Jerusalem.

Protesters from IHH, a Turkish pro-Islamic organization wave Palestinian flags, during a rally outside Israel's consulate in Istanbul, early Monday, May 10, 2021, in support of Palestinians in the latest round of violence in Jerusalem. Dozens of Palestinians were wounded in violent confrontations with police in Jerusalem overnight from Saturday to Sunday, when Muslims marked Laylat al-Qadr, or the "night of destiny," the holiest period of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)

The Latest: Gathering of Muslim nations condemns Israel