The fragments of two Katyusha rockets fired toward Israel from south Lebanon overnight Tuesday were found in the western Galilee region. No injuries or damage were reported.
Galilee district police stated that “a pair of 107-mm rockets made landfall. One landed near a community center in Shlomi, the other on the highway leading from Shlomi to Rosh Hanikra. The bomb squad has examined the fragments, and is still continuing its investigation and sweeping the area.”
The IDF said it did not identify the launching of the rockets, perhaps due to the weather conditions.
Landing site of one of the rockets (Photo: Ahiya Raved)
Shlomi Municipality head Gabi Na'aman told Ynet "as far as we know, two Katyusha rockets were fired overnight. One landed in the yard of a home, and some fragments were found in the balcony as well." He stated that no one reported the rocket attacks because people probably mistook the blasts for thunder.
'We can only hope that things quiet down'
The IDF Spokesperson’s Office stated that “the bomb squad is still inspecting the fallout. It is too soon to say when the rockets were fired and under what circumstances the attack took place.” Police forces scoured the area for rocket fragments all Tuesday morning.
Simona Solomon, a Kiryat Shmona resident, awoke to rocket fragments outside her home. She says that she heard a loud blast around 2:15 am. “I waited for sirens to go off, and to be told that we should head down to the bomb shelters, but my husband told me that it was just thunder and that I should go back to sleep,” she said.
“My son-in-law came in the next morning from synagogue, and told me that there were metal rocket fragments on our porch,” Solomon added. The Solomon family has lived in Shlomi for the past seven years, and did not leave the town even during the Second Lebanon War. “This is our home? Where else would we go? We can only hope that things quiet down.”
UNIFIL surveys damage
Four UN officers from UNIFIL arrived to Shlomi Tuesday morning to survey the area where the Katyusha rockets landed. The officers were briefed on the situation by Police sappers and took pictures of the damage.
The UNIFIL commander of the sector, Colonel Bernard Komins, told Ynet that he and his staff had no idea who was responsible for the incident and that they are still gathering evidence at the scene.
"This morning we received an announcement that rockets had landed in Shlomi and had struck a house in the town. We sent a team to the scene and we're still gathering information on the ground, photographing the areas where the rockets landed and the remains of the rockets. According to the information we gather, we will continue to investigate the incident."
In June a pair of 107-mm Katyusha rockets landed in the vicinity of Kiryat Shmona. A 24-year old university student suffering from shock was consequently sent for treatment at a local hospital. One of the rockets hit a vehicle in the city’s northern industrial district, the other landed in a residential neighborhood.
An unknown Islamic organization claimed responsibility for the rocket attacks. The “Bader Battalions of Jihad—the Lebanese Chapter” has also vowed to launch further attacks on Israel. “We promised our people Jihad (holy war). Now we have yet again struck the Zionists in occupied Palestine,” they said.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Monday that Hizbullah has improved its rocket launching capabilities, and now holds more, and larger rockets, then it did before the Second Lebanon War. These rockets can thus strike at ever growing areas within Israel. Bomb squad and other security personnel have stated however that “this attack does not show any tell-tale signs of being Hizbullah-initiated.”