The Israel Air Force attacked seven Gaza terror targets on Thursday night - three targets in the north of the Strip and four in its south - after 17 rockets were fired by Gaza terror groups towards southern Israel following Islamic Jihad's announcement on a truce with Israel.
The Iron Dome missiles-defense system was deployed in Beersheba and near Ashdod
on Thursday evening to stop grad rockets from reaching the populated cities.
'Code Red' sirens were heard shortly before 7:50 pm Thursday in the Shaar HaNegev and Sdot Negev Regional Councils and in Sderot, followed by three rocket falls. Two of the rockets fell in open areas in the Shaar HaNegev Regional Council and another fell in Sderot.
Another barrage of rockets was fired at around 8:30 pm, two of them intercepted by the Iron Dome missile-defense system. The rest fell in open areas. At around 9:05 pm, 'Code Red' sirens were heard for the third time in Sderot and Shaar HaNegev. Around 10:45 pm, another rocket fell in an open field in the Eshkol Regional Council. There was no 'Code Red' siren beforehand.
Earlier in the day, a rocket fell in an open area in the Ashkelon region, shortly after Islamic Jihad's announcement of an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire with Israel. The organization denied that it was behind the attack.
After over 60 rockets were fired at southern Israel on Wednesday evening, rocket fire from the Gaza Strip resumed Thursday morning, with sirens sounding in the towns of Yavne, Rehovot, Ashdod and Ashkelon. In light of the wake in rocket fire, Kerem Shalom Crossing has been closed, as well as Erez Crossing, which will only remain open for humanitarian emergencies.
At least one rocket fired at Ashkelon was neutralized by the Iron Dome missile defense system, the IDF confirmed. Two rockets landed in open fields between Ashkelon and Ashdod.
The Israel Air Force struck targets in southern Gaza Strip in response to the morning rocket fire. Palestinian sources in Gaza reported that the IAF struck two targets in Rafah: A smuggling tunnel and a cached launching pad.
Mattan Tzuri and Yoav Zitun contributed to this report.