Escalation in the Gaza Strip. The Israeli army struck positions of the Islamist movement Hamas in the Palestinian enclave on Sunday morning in retaliation for rocket fire directed at Israel, according to corroborating sources.
The Israeli army during the night reported two rockets fired from this Palestinian territory into Israel. Soon after, fighter jets, helicopters and tanks “hit” Hamas positions, the military added in a WhatsApp message.
“The Israeli army is currently assessing the situation and remains ready to take decisive action against terrorist operations targeting civilians or violating Israeli sovereignty,” the message continued.
In Gaza, security sources reported numerous Israeli strikes during the night in areas including Khan Younès, Rafah, Beit Hanoun, without mentioning victims. The rocket attacks, which have not yet been claimed, come almost a year to the day after a targeted Israeli operation against Baha Abu al-Ata a commander of the Islamic Jihad, the second armed group in the Gaza Strip after Hamas.
On Thursday, the Islamic Jihad held a military parade in the center of Gaza City, capital of the eponymous Palestinian territory, in memory of Commander Abu al-Ata, whose assassination was followed by a roadblock of hundreds of rockets towards Israel.
“The al-Quds brigades (armed wing of Islamic Jihad) are those which will determine the place and time of the response to the assassination of Abu al-Atta”, a senior official of the Islamic Jihad.
For its part, the Israeli army had indicated in recent days to be on alert along the Gaza Strip, a Palestinian territory of two million inhabitants surrounded by a hypersecure security barrier separating it from Israel, in due in particular to the anniversary of the death of Commander Abu al-Ata.