Tensions continued to escalate in the South early Friday morning with the Israel Air Force making two separate forays into the Gaza Strip to bomb terror targets in response to the firing of Kassam rockets into Israeli communities.
At around 1 a.m., Israeli aircraft struck a terror cell attempting to fire rockets after two projectiles had already landed in open fields in the Eshkol and Sha'ar Hanegev Regional Councils.
Palestinian sources said that two people were injured in the IDF strike. No Israelis were injured and no damage was caused in the earlier rocket attacks.
Two additional rockets were later fired from Gaza into southern Israel, landing in the Eshkol Regional Council area. No injuries or damage were reported in the attacks.
In response, Israeli aircraft struck two terror targets in the northern Gaza Strip.
On Saturday night, the Israel Air Force bombed a number of targets in the Strip in response to the firing of a number of Grad-model Katyusha rockets into Israel. One landed in Beersheba on Saturday. In another attack, an RPG was fired at an IDF patrol along the border with Gaza.
The continued rocket attacks have prompted some within the IDF's Southern Command to call for a large-scale operation to root out terror infrastructure within Gaza.
“There is no need to wait for a provocation to launch an offensive against terrorist infrastructure in the Gaza Strip,” a senior officer in the Southern Command explained. “The ongoing attacks – by rockets and along the border – are cumulatively more than enough to justify immediate action.”
Last month, The Jerusalem Post revealed that the IDF General Staff had ordered the Southern Command to speed up preparations for a possible large-scale operation in the Strip within the coming months.
Yaakov Katz contributed to this report.