A Palestinian man carries his father as he and others run to take cover during an Israeli airstrike in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip July 23, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Ali)
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Washington's top diplomat said global efforts to end 16 days of bloodshed in Gaza were progressing Wednesday as the fighting raged on and airlines suspended flights over rocket fears.Medics said more than 27 people were killed Wednesday, hiking the Palestinian death toll to 678 with a Gaza-based rights group saying more than 80 percent of them were civilians.In Israel, the army confirmed two more soldiers had died in fighting Tuesday.Kerry's arrival in Tel Aviv came a day after a Gaza rocket struck close to the airport, prompting the U.S. Federal Aviation Authority to ban commercial flights to and from Israel for at least 24 hours.As the violence raged on, U.N. rights chief Navi Pillay condemned both Israel and Hamas at an emergency session of the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva.She said Israeli attacks which had killed civilians, among them children, could amount to war crimes.The Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Human Rights said 81.5 percent of the dead were civilians, 24 percent of them children.
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