HELEN HERNANDEZ1 week ago
(File image) Remnants of rockets fired from the Gaza Strip towards Israel (REUTERS / Amir Cohen)
As fireworks lit up the skies celebrating New Years, a different kind of fire came from Gaza: terrorist rockets being fired at Israel. In response, we targeted Hamas sites in Gaza, including a rocket manufacturing site and military posts, ”reported the Israel Defense Force.
Thus, the army confirmed having bombed Hamas positions in the southern Gaza Strip between Saturday night and Sunday, in retaliation for the launch of rockets from the Palestinian enclave.
“Israeli warplanes attacked a site of the Al Qasam brigades (the armed wing of Hamas) west of Jan Yunes,” a city in the southern Gaza Strip, Palestinian security sources told AFP. They indicated that artillery shots were also fired at an observation base of the Islamist movement in the north of the enclave.
The Israeli operation destroyed a rocket manufacturing facility and other military sites, targeting the Khan Younis area., in the south of the enclave.
The exchange follows several days of tensions that began when snipers inside Gaza fired at Israeli contractors who were carrying out maintenance work on the 65-kilometer border fence surrounding the enclave. A civilian worker was treated for minor injuries from that attack. Israeli tanks fired at Hamas positions in response, slightly injuring three people, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.
In the early hours of New Year’s morning, two rockets were fired from Gaza, flying over the Mediterranean Sea, causing no damage or warnings of an air attack on Israeli communities, although one of the projectiles fell not far from the coast of Tel Aviv. .
“Hamas is responsible and bears the consequences of all activity in and emanating from the Gaza Strip,” the army said in a statement after the attacks.
(File Image) Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system intercepts rockets launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel in May 2021 (REUTERS / Amir Cohen // File Photo)
The rise in tensions comes as Israel and Hamas are negotiating, with Egypt’s mediation, a lasting peace agreement. But the talks have been bogged down by issues such as the return of prisoners and human remains that are in the hands of Hamas, among others.
Military analysts claimed that the sniper attack and rocket fire may be attempts by Hamas or other Gaza militants to pressure Israel to accelerate the pace of reconstruction and ease other restrictions in the enclave.
Gaza terrorists also warned they would intensify the attacks amid reports that a Palestinian prisoner held by Israel was in mortal danger after a prolonged hunger strike. Hisham Abu Hawash was detained more than a year ago on suspicion of being an Islamic Jihad activist, according to Israeli media. He has refused to receive food for almost 20 weeks.
What is at stake, according to analysts, is an unusually long period of relative calm along the Gaza border, where rocket exchanges and retaliatory attacks are a routine part of life for Gazans and Gazans alike. Israelis from surrounding cities.
However, since a ceasefire ended the war in May, almost no attacks have been launched by either side. Military and political leaders have boasted in recent weeks that they have reached a level of deterrence in Gaza, a claim challenged by recent exchanges.
With information from AFP and The Washington Post