IDF aircraft struck targets in the Gaza Strip in the early hours on Thursday, Palestinians said, a day after Palestinians fired at least two Grad rockets, striking deep into Israel. There were no reports of injuries in the attacks.

The IDF confirmed that several strikes were carried out in Gaza in response to earlier rocket attacks and that direct hits on multiple targets were recorded.

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A long-range Grad rocket fired from Gaza landed in open territory in Lachish, near Kiryat Gat late on Wednesday night. Later on Wednesday night, a Grad rocket fell near Ashkelon. Police said the rocket landed within Ashkelon city boundaries and damaged a road. A police response team was on the scene.

The attacks represents an escalation in the firing of longer-range rockets. The last time such rockets were fired at Israel was in March, when a number of projectiles landed in the Ashdod and Lachish area, and schools in the area were closed.

Air raid sirens were heard in several towns and villages in the south, including the Yoav Regional Council, the Sha'ar Hanegev Regional Council, and the Ashkelon coast Regional Council.
Residents in areas in which sirens were heard rushed into safe areas and shelters to take cover. Five people were lightly injured while running for shelter after sirens went off signaling the Grad rocket attack on Ashkelon .

The injured were evacuated to Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon.

On Monday, a woman from a Beduin village was moderately injured by shrapnel from a Palestinian rocket fired at southern Israel from Gaza.

That rocket landed between in open territory in the Ashkelon Coast Regional
Council. An air raid siren went off before the rocket landed.

A police response team drove out to the scene of the attack to recover and analyze the projectile. Hours later, the Air Force bombed a number of targets in Gaza in response.