IAF jets scramble to intercept unidentified aircraft near Gaza strip

The small light aircraft piloted by an Israeli civilian had flown over Sderot without the coordination of authorities, in violation of civil aviation laws.

February 2, 2019 18:23
1 minute read.
iaf jet

An IAF F-15I fighter jet. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Two Israeli Air Force jets were scrambled Saturday to intercept a small unidentified aircraft that was spotted over the southern town of Sderot, near the Gaza Strip, the army said.

The military said that the small light aircraft piloted by an Israeli civilian had flown over Sderot without the coordination of authorities, in violation of civil aviation laws. The army said the incident would be handled by police.
“The IDF will work to eliminate the danger of a flight that is not in accordance with the flight laws and procedures of the state,” the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said in a statement.

On Friday some 10,000 Palestinians clashed with Israeli troops in several locations along the Gaza border fence as part of the weekly Great Return Marches on Friday, burning tires,throwing rocks and hand grenades at Israeli troops.

IDF troops responded by riot-dispersal means, including firing rubber-coated steel rounds and live bullets at the protesters.

According to the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza, while there were no fatalities 32 Palestinians were wounded. Two paramedics were also injured, including one female paramedic who was hit in the face by a tear gas canister fired by the IDF. 

Palestinian media reported that the protests which took place on Friday were held in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails. 

The Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza has said over 240 Palestinians have been killed and over 22,000 others injured since the beginning of the Great March of Return protests along Gaza border which began on March 30,calling for an end of the 12 year long Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. 

Two Israeli soldiers have been killed and several wounded since March, one by a Palestinian sniper and another during a botched special forces operation inside Gaza.

The Palestinian Health Ministry in the blockaded coastal enclave has warned numerous times that health facilities and services will soon be forced to cease operation due to a severe fuel crisis.

In the West Bank at least 15 Palestinians were injured in clashes which broke out between Palestinians and IDF troops outside the village of al-Mughayyir northeast of Ramallah on Friday in protest of the death of 38  year-old Hamdi Saadeh Naasan who was shot by Israeli settlers last week.

Maan news agency reported that Israeli soldiers fired live bullets and rubber-coated steel bullets at protesters who threw rocks at the troops.

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