Terror groups in the Gaza Strip are sparing no effort to launch rockets into Israel yet the Israel Defense Forces have identified a unique phenomenon: Over 80 percent of fired rockets fall on the Palestinian side.
“We consider every launch as a threat and respond to it accordingly, yet the data clarify the fact that we are dealing with a Palestinian roulette and it is a matter of time before innocent citizens are hurt from activities of terror groups,” an IDF source said Sunday.
On Sunday afternoon, Palestinian sources in the Gaza Strip reported that a rocket fired by Palestinian gunmen had fallen on a Palestinian house in central Gaza's Dir al-Balah area. The Palestinians reported that at least one person, a Palestinian police officer who lives in the house, was injured in the incident.
Since Israel’s August withdrawal from the Gaza Strip there has been a significant decrease in attacks emanating from the tiny territory. Despite the relative lull, IDF troops positioned around Gaza have discovered over ten explosive devices on the Israel-Gaza border destined for smuggling into Israel.
'Exhaustion among terror groups'
The tight security around the Strip however has rendered terror groups more dependent on Qassam and mortar attacks which increased since Israel’s withdrawal.
The IDF is using a deterrence strategy against these attacks, firing artilleries and IAF missiles at launching sites.
Statistics collected by the IDF have shown that “the firing of Qassams hurts the Palestinian population not only strategically but also physically.”
Since the assassination of senior Islamic Jihad member Loai Saadi in Tul Qarem last month 40 rockets were launched in Israel’s direction, only 7 of which exploded in Israeli territory. The rest exploded in Palestinian areas, at time causing damages and injuries.
“This situation points to exhaustion among terror groups, Hamas no longer fires and the remaining groups seem to have less resources. The big question remains how the Palestinian public will reply. Will there be unrest that will influence terror groups or will they act indifferently,” a military official said.
“A situation where most rockets fall in their houses or their fields is a serious deadly danger,” the official added.
On Sunday Israel gave the green light to Egypt to transfer ammunitions to the Palestinian Authority security forces in the Gaza Strip in accordance with a Cabinet decision last week to strengthen PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas before the January elections and assist him in restraining the activities of terror groups.
Also on Sunday, the first load of Kalashnikov magazines is set to cross the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza, Yedioth Ahronot, Israel’s leading newspaper, reported Sunday. Security officials said that the United States has funded the purchase.
Ali Waked contributed to the report