The IDF attacked terror targets in Rafah in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, in response to a three-stage terrorist attack which killed seven Israelis and wounded dozens in the South earlier in the day.
Six Palestinians were killed in the joint IDF and Shin Bet strike.
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Among those killed was the chief of the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC), Kamal al-Nairab. The five others that were killed were also members of the terrorist faction .
Security sources said that the PRC was behind Thursday's triple attack near Eilat. They added that the operatives had crossed from the Gaza Strip into Egypt and then into Isreal this morning to carry out the attack.
Israel had received intel on the possibility of an attack. For that
reason, Israeli special forces, including the elite counter-terror
forces, were already stationed in the area.
IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz said in a press
conference just after the airstrike was reported, that the IDF had begun
responding in Gaza in the area "where we believe the planners of the
attack are based."
IDF forces were still searching the area around Eilat and the Egyptian
border out of concern that there may be terrorists still in the area.
Sources said that it is possible that there were as many 20 terrorist in
the area, both in Israel and on the Egyptian side of the border.
They added that there may be another terrorist cell hiding in the area.
IDF and special police counter-terrorist forces killed seven terrorists
during the three coordinated attacks.
Both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Miniater Ehud Barak had earlier said that Israel would strike back at the terrorist infrastructure
in Gaza in response to the attacks.