Qassam launcher
Photo: AFP

IAF hits N. Gaza following Qassam attack

Air force launches strike against Qassam cell in northern Gaza, leaving one man dead; rocket hits Sderot home directly

Shortly after the shooting, Israel Air Force helicopters launched an air strike against the terror cell responsible for a Saturday afternoon Qassam attack on Sderot. 


Palestinian sources in Gaza reported that a car was hit in the strike, killing one Palestinian and wounding another. The sources said that the car belonged to members of the Islamic Jihad's Qassam-launching cell, although they claimed the fatality - Kemal Anan - was not directly involved in firing the rocket.


This is only the second time since November 2006 - with the onset of a ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinian Authority - that the IAF has struck a Qassam-launching cell, although there have been a number of Qassam attacks in the interim. 


In this most recent attack, one of the rockets directly hit a house in Sderot, while two other rockets landed in open fields outside the town. Magen David Adom reported that six people suffered shock.


Upon identification of the Qassam launching, a code red alert was activated, but Sderot residents told Ynet that the alarm was not heard in all areas. Defense forces scanned the areas where the hits were identified, in order to locate traces of the rockets.


Al-Quds Brigades, the Islamic Jihad's military wing claimed responsibility for the Qassams, saying this was in response to the incident in which three Palestinian gunmen were killed in Jenin by Border Guard forces earlier Saturday.


Two of the gunmen killed were al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades operatives and one was an al-Quds Brigades operative.


Palestinian sources also said one of the Fatah gunmen, Abbas Damaj, was closely associated with Zakariya Zubeidi, the commander of al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigades (the organization's military wing) in Jenin.


Reuters and Ali Waked contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 04.21.07, 21:39
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