Qassam rocket, Sunday
Photo: Amir Cohen
Injured evacuated in Sderot (archives)
Photo: Amir Cohen

Qassam lands near Sderot kindergarten

Rocket hits neighborhood in southern town, causes damage to private house located near kindergarten; several people suffer from shock, one woman loses consciousness. Military sources say IDF policy in Gaza may change

A Qassam rocket fired from the northern Gaza Strip landed Monday morning near a private house in the southern town of Sderot, causing damage to the building.


A number of people suffered from shock, including a woman who lost her consciousness.


A kindergarten is located not far from the landing site. Sderot residents said that the fact that no one was physically hurt was a miracle, as children were making their way to the kindergarten.


The al-Quds Brigades, the Islamic Jihad's military wing, claimed responsibility for firing the rocket. According to the Jihad, they fired a medium-range 'Quds' rocket.


The organization said that the rocket fire was a response to Israel's operation in the West Bank. The group also claimed responsibility for firing a mortar shell at an IDF post in Kissufim.


Angry residents

Haim Buskila, whose sister's house was hit by the rocket, said, "I live close by and we heard the explosion. I ran quickly to see if everything was okay at my sister's home. Although there were no injuries, she is suffering from heavy mental damage and so are we. We have no fortified rooms and we feel like rabbits in a cave – every time you take your head out you are afraid to get hurt."


According to Buskila, "Our life is on the stake, while the leaders are fighting whether to remain in offer or not. Which other country would allow its city to be bombed like this? Are we no longer important? Where is the solidarity? Where is the State? People are already talking about an underground organization which will rise and bomb them back. Gaza should be erased. If they are crazy, we shall also act crazy."


The Qassam barrages fired at the western Negev increased over the weekend, and particularly on Sunday.


Angry residents arrived at the landing site, including Albert Gabay, a local journalist and activist.


"I have a 1.5-year-old child and I am very worried. My wife wants us to leave, while I am connected to this city and am torn between the need to defend my family and the desire to stay here," he said.


Avi Farahan, a Gush Katif evacuee who lives in Sderot, said that he would resume his petition to the High Court calling for fortification for every resident.


"We are now determined more than ever with this petition, particularly when we hear officers who want to act and are stopped by the army," he said.


Seven rockets launched from the Strip landed in the western Negev on Sunday – six in open fields, and one nearby an industrial area, meters away from a gas station. One man was moderately injured from shrapnel, and four others were treated for shock.


Following an increase in Qassam rocket fire towards Negev communities over the weekend, military forces are soon to change their operational policies in the Gaza Strip, according to IDF sources.


“We are preparing, and willing to up the ante with regards to offensive and foiling operations in the Gaza Strip. The way things look now, we may have to increase activity very soon … no more sitting around,” a senior security official told Ynet.


Despite these estimates, senior officials avoided expressing a clear opinion with regards to the type of action the IDF should take in Gaza. “That is a decision for the political echelon to make, and we will carry out whatever is necessary,” the officials said.


Hanan Greenberg and Ali Waked contributed to the report


פרסום ראשון: 05.07.07, 07:26
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