Gaza launches rockets at Israel, first since Soleimani killing

Clay Curtis
January 17, 2020

The Israeli military said that four rockets were fired into Israel on Wednesday, with the country confirming that its Iron Dome System intercepted half of them.

The sappers collected the remains of the device in order to study what type of explosives were used, a police spokesperson said.

Two million Palestinians living in Gaza have been subjected to a 12-year blockade, with much of its infrastructure destroyed by Israeli attacks.

"In response to the 4 rockets fired from Gaza at Israel earlier today, IDF fighter jets struck Hamas terror targets in Gaza, including a weapons manufacturing site & a military compound", the IDF said on Twitter.

Israeli police said the balloons touched down in southern Israel and a bomb squad was dispatched.

Hamas's armed wing usually evacuates its facilities in anticipation of Israeli retaliation after cross-border rocket strikes. The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) said that the iron dome intercepted a rocket mid-air, fired at civilians, from Gaza strip.

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It did not say where the other two rockets landed.

The fire from the Palestinian territory was the first since the Jan 3 assassination in a Baghdad drone strike of Soleimani, a key figure in Iran which supports Hamas.

But simmering tensions have mostly remained calm since a two-day surge of violence in November between Israel and Gaza-based Islamic Jihad.

In December, a rocket was sacked at the Israeli city of Ashkelon as it hosted a rally with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars and dozens of smaller flareups since Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007 from the internationally recognized Palestinian Authority.

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