IAF strikes Gaza following second rocket fired at Israel in 24 hours

Air Force retaliates to Gaza rocket-fire with strikes, 2 Palestinians reported injured; PM blames Hamas for recent attacks on Israel.

December 26, 2013 23:06
1 minute read.
Trails of smoke from Gazan rockets fired at Israel

Trails of smoke from Gazan rockets 390. (photo credit: Amir Cohen / Reuters)


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The Israel Air Force struck two targets in Gaza in response to rocket fire on southern Israel on Thursday. The targets struck were a weapons manufacturing site in central Gaza and a weapons storage site in the North of the Strip.

Two Palestinians were wounded by the air strikes, Palestinian news agency WAFA reported.

The IDF also said the targets were struck accurately, adding that all planes returned to base safely.

The strikes were a response to rocket fire on southern Israel on Thursday evening, that activated Code Red sirens in the Hof Asheklon Regional Council for the second time in 24 hours.

The first incident was on Thursday shortly after midnight when two Gazan rockets were fired at the southern coastal area.

All rockets in the past 24 hours landed in open fields and there were no injuries or damages.

The IDF remained on high alert along the Gaza border in case of an escalation following a deadly cross-border shooting of an Israeli civilian and a large-scale IDF retaliation this week.

Sources from the IDF’s Southern Command said forces were ready to react to attacks at a moment’s notice, while acknowledging that, as of Thursday evening, the situation appeared to be calm.

Over the past few days, the IDF deployed the Iron Dome rocket defense system in Ashdod, Beersheba and Sderot.

Earlier Thursday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said Israel holds Hamas responsible for the recent string of attacks emanating from the Gaza Strip.

The premier warned of Israeli retribution against attacks on its citizens.

"We will strike those who attack us along with those who sponsor them," he said at an IAF graduation ceremony. "There will be no immunity for anyone."

Yair Farjun, head of the Hof Ashkelon Regional Council called on the government to prevent the current situation from escalating further.

"Even if we're speaking about a single shot, it interrupts and disturbs the daily lives of residents," he told Army Radio in response to Thursday morning's attack.

"Although residents can return to normal, the government must prevent this situation from continuing."

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