At roughly 1:30 am a Color Red siren was sounded in Ashkelon, followed by distant blast sounds resulting from the Iron Dome interception of the Gaza rockets. No injuries or damage were reported.
The IDF note there seems to be been a growing reluctance by Hamas'
willingness to enforce the agreements reached at the end of Operation Pillar of Defense,
thus effectively loosening the reigns of smaller more militant groups active in the strip.
The IDF believe that last night's rocket onslaught on Ashkelon was undertaken not by Hamas directly by but rather by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad,
a Hamas adversary interested in pushing the IDF into escalating the situation and placing Hamas in a bind.
"The Islamic Jihad is responsible for the launch of six Grad rockets at Israel. A short while afterwards we responded, targeting for targets belonging to the organization," the IDF spokesperson unit said.
"Hamas is responsible for Gaza, it is responsible and will need to decide whether to act or not. Last month it acted less assertively in preserving what was achieved during Operation Pillar of Defense.
"We have the option to increase the severity of our response in accordance to the level of threat posed. We will not tolerate rocket fire at Israel, the IDF views such attacks on our land with the utmost severity and we will continue to ask against all those inflicting terror on Israel."