Middle East

Israeli airforce strikes in Gaza following rockets

An Israeli Army helicopter flies over an open area in southern Israel October 6, 2012. REUTERS/Amir Cohen

GAZA CITY: The Israeli airforce carried out a sortie in the Gaza Strip early Thursday morning, sources on both sides said, hours after rockets from the enclave hit southern Israel.

Palestinian medics and security sources said the strike targeted a Hamas security site south of Gaza City. They said the attack resulted in no injuries.

A statement from the Israeli army said its "aircraft targeted a terror activity site in the northern Gaza Strip. A direct hit was confirmed."

"The site was targeted in response to the rocket fire at southern Israel," the military said.

On Wednesday, militants in the Gaza Strip fired two rockets into southern Israel, causing no casualties or damage.

Early in the morning, Israeli aircraft struck what a military statement called "a terror activity site in the northern Gaza Strip."

The raid came in response to rocket fire on Tuesday night which exploded near a home in southern Israel, causing property damage, police said, after a two-day lull in cross-border violence.

On Sunday, five rockets or mortar rounds hit southern Israel, part of a wave of tit-for-tat exchanges beginning on October 7 when an air strike targeted two Salafists in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, killing one and critically wounding the other.

Five children and three adults were also wounded in the strike, prompting a rare armed response from Hamas and Islamic Jihad militants, who fired a barrage of rockets at Israel.

The last time Hamas militants had fired on Israel was during a flare-up in June, when militant groups fired more than 150 rockets, wounding five people, and Israel hit back with air strikes that killed 15 Palestinians.

A series of retaliatory Israeli air strikes on Gaza at the weekend killed five militants, including a top Salafist leader.

According to the Israeli military, Gaza militants have fired more than 505 rockets or mortar rounds at southern Israel since the beginning of the year, including upwards of 45 this month alone.





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