Israel launches airstrikes against blockaded Gaza Strip

Israel launches airstrikes against blockaded Gaza Strip

Israel targeted Hamas positions in southern Gaza late Saturday night after rockets were fired from the blockaded Palestinian enclave, security sources and the army said.
The Israel Defense Forces said in a brief message to the press that they were “currently carrying out strikes” in Gaza, the Palestinian territory controlled by the Hamas resistance movement.
“Israeli warplanes are targeting a site of the al-Qassam Brigades, west of Khan Yunis” in southern Gaza, Palestinian sources told AFP, referencing the military wing of Hamas.
The sources also reported artillery fire on a Hamas observation base in northern Gaza.
It comes after two rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip on Saturday morning, falling into the Mediterranean Sea, off the coast of Tel Aviv.
No sirens were sounded and Israel’s Iron Dome rocket interception system did not deploy, the army said in a statement.
Israel has maintained an illegal blockade on the impoverished enclave since 2007, the year Hamas took power.
In early May, tensions in Israel and Palestine flared into the worst disturbances since 2017 in the days since Israeli riot police clashed with large crowds of Palestinians on the last Friday of the Muslim holy fasting month of Ramadan.
Nightly unrest since then at the Al-Aqsa compound in occupied East Jerusalem has left more than 700 Palestinians wounded, drawing international calls for de-escalation and sharp rebukes from across the Muslim world.
A fragile ceasefire came into force in late May, and since then, only five rockets or mortar rounds were fired from Gaza towards Israeli territory, the military had said in an annual report released at the end of December, before the latest launches.


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