Photo: Amir Cohen
Qassam hits Ashkelon (archives)
Photo: Amir Cohen
3 Qassam rockets land in Ashkelon
Several loud explosions heard in south of city Tuesday night; no injuries or damage reported. Palestinians report IDF fired at launching cell in northern Gaza town of Beit Lahiya. Earlier, 12 rockets launched towards Sderot, western Negev; 14-year-old girl moderately injured

Three Qassam rockets landed Tuesday night in southern Ashkelon. There were no reports of injuries or damage. Hamas claimed responsibility for firing the rockets.


At around 11:15 pm, the Color Red alert system was activated in the city's southern industrial zone. According to police reports, several explosions were heard in the area.


Shortly afterward, Palestinians sources reported that a loud explosion had been heard in the Beit Lahiya area in the northern Gaza Strip. The sources estimated that the IDF had fired at the cell which launched to rockets towards Ashkelon.


Earlier Tuesday, Palestinians fired 12 Qassam rockets at the southern town of Sderot and the western Negev communities. A 14-year-old girl was moderately injured by shrapnel and three people were lightly hurt from smoke inhalation after a rocket directly hit a house in Sderot.


President Shimon Peres arrived at the rocket-battered city on Tuesday evening. During the visit, the Color Red alert system was activated, and a rocket landed south of the city.


Peres said he arrived in Sderot in order to strengthen the residents. "The city's residents should be proud, and I am proud of them," he said.


The president explained why he chose to arrive in the city despite the rocket barrages which began before his arrival.


"I am a citizen like all the citizens of Israel, and I cannot change my route and return to Jerusalem. Therefore, I insisted on visiting Sderot despite the Qassams," he said.


On Tuesday afternoon, IDF warplanes fired a missile at a Hamas police post in the Khan Younis area in Southern Gaza. Palestinians reported that seven Hamas men were killed in the airstrike and that the post was heavily damaged.


Ali Waked contributed to this report


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