MK Orlev in Sderot as rocket hits

Barak decides to keep Gaza crossings closed as 4 Kassams, several mortar shells slam into w. Negev.

Kassam field cool 248.88 (photo credit: AP)
Kassam field cool 248.88
(photo credit: AP)
NU-NRP MK Zevulun Orlev's visit to Sderot's Hesder Yeshiva was cut short on Sunday afternoon when a Kassam rocket landed a couple of hundred of meters from him. "It was a terrible feeling," he said. "I came to the Yeshiva in order to examine the development of armoring of the institute where 500 students are under a daily threat… the Rabbi of the Yeshiva and I were sitting in his office, which is not shielded, when the alarm was activated. We started running to the nearest concrete shelter and as we were running we heard the distant explosion of one Kassam. The second we took cover another Kassam exploded, this time it sounded close, probably 200 meters from us," Orlev said. Gaza terrorists launched yet another attack on southern Israel on Sunday, firing two Kassam rockets which hit the Sderot region. One of the rockets landed in a populated area while the other landed in the outskirts of the city. No one was wounded in the latest attack and no damage was reported. In response to the attacks, Defense Minister Ehud Barak decided that crossings to the Gaza Strip will remain closed on Monday. The MK said that this was not the first time he had experience the terror of a Kassam attack, which has been routine to the area's residents for the past eight years. "It's been a while since the last time I've heard a Kassam exploding right next to me." "In any case," he went on, "this is a horrible feeling, and I was ashamed to look in the eyes of those who live this reality on a daily basis, those whom the country has abandoned," he added. Also Sunday, several mortar shells fired from Gaza exploded in open areas in the western Negev, and earlier in the day, two Kassams hit the Eshkol region. The attacks caused neither casualties nor damage. On Saturday, surgeons at Barzilai Hospital in Ashkelon were forced to amputate the leg of 21-year-old Noam Nikash of Beersheba, one of eight soldiers wounded by a Palestinian mortar shell attack on a Nahal Oz IDF base the previous night. The seven other troops, including two female soldiers, were lightly to moderately hurt in the attack. Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack on Saturday morning, though the Popular Resistance Committees made the same proclamation the previous day. One shell landed inside the base, while two others landed in open fields nearby. In response to the attacks, as well as continued Kassam fire on the western Negev, Defense Minister Ehud Barak decided to keep the crossings between Israel and Gaza closed on Sunday. Two additional shells landed in the area of a nearby kibbutz, but no additional casualties or damage were reported. Earlier Friday, Palestinian gunmen clashed with IDF troops along the Gaza-Israel border. The IDF said troops identified a group of gunmen in southern Gaza trying to place an explosive device along the security fence. The gunmen opened fire as the military patrol approached, and soldiers shot back, hitting one of the gunmen, the army said. In the course of the fire exchange, a number of mortar shell rounds were fired at the soldiers, but no casualties or damage were reported, the IDF added. Dr. Moiaya Hassanain of the Gaza Health Ministry said an unidentified Palestinian was killed, no body was brought to the morgue at the hospital in Khan Younis after the clash. Hamas's armed wing, Izzadin Kassam, claimed responsibility for firing the mortar shells.