Three rockets were fired from Lebanon into northern Israel last night, the second time during this campaign. Some damage was caused to structures. In response, IDF artillery forces fired toward the source of the launch. The IDF is now considering the option of a developing northern front, and is considering moving up north some Iron dome anti-rocket systems.
Hamas launched dozens of rockets at Israel over the weekend. More than 129 rockets were fired from Gaza towards Israel. At least 117 rockets struck Israel. 9 rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system. The IDF hit 120 terror targets in the Gaza Strip. A rocket fired from Gaza fell short and crashed into UNRWA warehouses, causing a massive fire.
For the first time, the Judea region south of Jerusalem was attacked; areas under Palestinian Authority control were hit. A salvo was launched at the Jerusalem area in the early evening yesterday, and one rocket exploded in the yard of a home in Arab-controlled Hebron. Another rocket struck Bethlehem, also under PA control, and a third hit near Efrat, not far from Bethlehem. Following rocket attacks on Bethlehem and Hebron, the IDF distributed safety information in Arabic to Palestinian Authority areas.
For the first time this operation the IDF had boots on the ground. Special IDF forces raided a launching site used to fire long-range rockets at Israel. During the mission, a firefight ensued. Four soldiers were lightly injured and all returned home safely. All objectives were reportedly achieved and the mission is considered a success.
The IDF intends to step up its strikes on areas in northern Gaza, from which the majority of the rockets are launched at Israel. This move was decided on after consultations with legal advisers dealing with international law, who will also accompany the commanders. The IDF dropped leaflets over the Beit Lahia area, urging the residents to evacuate their homes. The IDF delineated the exact area they intend to attack. The IDF told the citizens they have until noon today to leave, and if not: “Those who do not listen to the instructions of the IDF risk their life and the lives of their family. Beware, beware.”
Since the start of Operation Protective Edge, over 809 rockets have been fired towards Israel. Of them 635 hit Israel and nearly 145 have been intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system. The IDF has targeted over 1,320 terror targets, with both naval and aerial capabilities.
By Aryeh Savir
Tazpit News Agency