Air strikes by Israel's military on the Gaza border have killed three people including a pregnant woman and her toddler, the Gaza Health Ministry says.
Meanwhile, Hamas spokesman Abdel-Latif Kanou said in a statement, "Increasingly frequent artillery barrages into Gaza and the targeting of civilians is intentional". One Israeli soldier was killed by a Gaza sniper during this period.
The Israeli army said Wednesday's violence began with militants firing guns at an Israeli engineering vehicle, and Israeli troops responding with tank fire.
Katz, meanwhile, proposed "shifting the full responsibility over the Gaza Strip to the worldwide community, while keeping Israel's security control on the port".
The majority of some 70 rockets hit open areas while 11 were intercepted, Israel's military said. At least two Israelis were injured by glass shards, the medical organization Magen David Adom reported.
At least seven Israelis were injured by the rocket fire, including three in the border town of.
Wednesday's exchange came just a day after two members of the Gaza Strip's ruling Hamas movement were killed by Israeli fire. In that incident, two fighters from the military wing of Hamas were killed by Israeli fire along the border.
Their deaths come as violence continues to flare up between Israel and Gaza's rulers from the Islamic militant Hamas.
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The Gaza Strip, home to almost two million Palestinians, has been reeling under a crippling Israeli blockade since 2007.
Israeli Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz said his government rejected an European Union plan to link the Gaza Strip with the West Bank by train, the Anadolu Agency reported yesterday.
A video has been circulating on social media that captures the terror that Israelis endure when Hamas launches rockets at them.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened an emergency meeting of the security cabinet due to the growing tensions in the Gaza Strip which was attended by Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman and senior commanders. However, Israel appears to be learning more towards a quid-pro-quo agreement with Hamas instead of a comprehensive ceasefire, as past resolutions have often crumbled.
According to Haaretz, an Israeli official source said last week that cease-fire talks would not succeed unless the bodies of slain Israeli soldiers and two Israeli civilians being held captive in Gaza were returned.
Smoke plumes and fireballs could be seen over the Gaza Strip as the strikes were being carried out.
Israel has been battling large fires caused by kites and balloons rigged with incendiary devices or burning rags launched from Gaza that have destroyed forests, burned crops and killed wildlife and livestock. According to reports, it would be the relative of a senior Hamas commander.
The gathering had raised hopes a deal for a lasting truce with Israel, with the backing of Egypt and the United Nations. Support UN/Egypt efforts to restore calm and agree ceasefire.