Kassams hit Ashkelon industrial site

Islamic Jihad threatens to step up attacks, claim improved rocket range.

kassam unit 298 (photo credit: Channel 1 [file])
kassam unit 298
(photo credit: Channel 1 [file])
Eight Kassam rockets were fired at the Western Negev and the industrial zone south of Ashkelon on Tuesday. There were no casualties, but one of the rockets exploded close to a strategic installation in the industrial zone and another caused damage to the Carlsberg beer factory. It is not the first time that rockets have landed inside the industrial zone, where a number of strategic installations are located, including a major power station, oil pipelines and a desalination plant. In response, artillery units shelled rocket launching sites in the northern Gaza Strip. According to the army, while eight rockets were fired at Israel, only five of them were located. In the morning, a rocket fired from Beit Hanun fell close to the Erez industrial zone in northern Gaza. Then two rockets landed at the Sufa crossing in southern Gaza - one on the Israeli side and the other on the Palestinian side. In the afternoon, two rockets landed in the Ashkelon industrial zone. Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the Kassams fired at Ashkelon, saying they were al-Quds rockets with an improved range. The terrorist group said it planned to fire 100 rockets at Israel in response to intensified IDF activities. In the West Bank, the IDF stepped up its operations to arrest fugitives. Before dawn, security forces arrested 19 fugitives affiliated with Islamic Jihad, Fatah and Hamas in raids in Nablus, Bethlehem, Hebron and villages east of Ramallah and northeast of Kalkilya. Later in the morning, elite Border Police units arrested three Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine fugitives in Bethlehem. During the operation, one of the fugitives was shot when he attempted to evade arrest and was transferred to a hospital in Israel. Two others were handed over to the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) for questioning. An Islamic Jihad fugitive was arrested by an IDF unit in Yabad, west of Jenin. In the afternoon, two Palestinian youths were arrested at West Bank checkpoints after they were caught carrying knives. One youth was arrested at the Machpela Cave in Hebron. The army said the same youth had recently been released from prison, where he served six months for carrying a handgun at the same checkpoint in 2004. The second youth was arrested at the Hawara checkpoint south of Nablus.