Following a calm night in south Israel, dozens of rockets were fired on the region on Monday morning. One projectile exploded near a school in Ashkelon, damaging the building. Another projectile fired shortly thereafter exploded in a home's yard. No injuries were immediately reported. The IDF continued to strike Gaza terror hubs overnight Sunday and on Monday morning.
The first air raid sirens sounded at approximately 6:30 am Monday in the Hof Ashkelon, Sha'ar Hanegev and the Eshkol regional councils. Rocket barrages followed, largely exploding in open areas across the south, while others were intercepted by the Iron Dome. The aerial defense system shot down projectiles fired on the cities of Ashdod, Beersheba and Sderot, among others.
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By 2 pm roughly 60 rockets were fired towards Israel from Gaza.
The IDF has bombed over 80 Gaza targets overnight, including rocket launching sites, tunnels and training camps. Buildings that served as command centers and weapon storage facilities were attacked as well. Several terror cells were hit while firing rockets on Israel.
School hit by rocket (Photo: Ido Erez)
The IDF Spokesperson's Unit said that among the targets was a football stadium which was used by terrorists as a rocket launching site and an arms cache.
On Monday morning the IAF struck six rocket launching sites. The IDF said that since Operation Pillar of Defense began, 1,350 terror targets have been hit. The Palestinians report that 88 people have been killed and 700 injured in the operation.
"The Gaza Strip has become an Iranian base," the IDF Spokesperson's Unit said. "(…) The targets that were struck were indentified via precise intelligence information… The IDF is determined and will continue attacking targets serving as bases for terror used against Israeli citizens."
The army said that the less than 4% of the rockets fired on Israel have exploded in urban areas. So far 310 projectiles have been intercepted by the Iron Dome aerial defense system.
'16 killed in Gaza'
The Ma'an news agency said at least three people, including two children - aged three and four - were killed during an aerial attack on the Zeitoun neighborhood east of Gaza City. An attack on Khan Younis claimed the lives of two people and seriously injured a girl, while three others were killed in a strike on a civilian car in Deir al-Balah.
IDF strike in Gaza on Monday (Photo: Reuters)
It was further reported that at around 5 am Israeli aircraft leveled a police headquarters in Gaza City.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon reiterated his call on both Israel and the Palestinians to hold fire.
Hamas said in a statement on Sunday night it had so far fired 1,093 rockets on southern Israeli communities, as well as central Israel and the Jerusalem region.
You can contact Elior Levy, Ynet's Palestinian Affairs Correspondent, at: firstname.lastname@example.org