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Damage in a classroom from a rocket in Ashkelon, February 28, 2009..(Photo by: REUTERS)
Ashdod to close unfortified schools following rockets
Southern coastal city decides to call off studies for some 3,500 students following recent rocket fire from Gaza on nearby areas.

Unfortified schools and preschools in Ashdod were slated to be closed on Friday due to fears of a potential escalation of rocket fire following multiple threats on Thursday.

Some 3,500 students in the southern port city were expected to miss classes due to the precaution.

According to Israel Radio, the decision would mainly affect educational institutions in Ashdod's haredi neighborhoods.

Earlier Thursday evening, the Code Red rocket alert siren sounded in the Ashkelon Coast Regional Council.

An IDF Spokesperson said no rockets had fallen in Israeli territory.

All schools in Asheklon - both protected and unprotected were set to operate as usual on Friday.

In the early hours of Thursday morning, the Iron Dome rocket defense system intercepted five projectiles fired from Gaza at Ashkelon.

An additional rocket may have landed in an open, uninhabited area. No injuries were reported.

In response to the attack, the IAF struck four targets in the northern Gaza Strip, including a terror site, an underground rocket launcher, a weapons storage facility and a weapons manufacturing site, the IDF Spokesperson said.

Yaakov Lappin contributed to this report.

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