Rocket in western Negev (archives)
Photo: Ze'ev Trachtman

Qassam explodes in western Negev

Rocket hits orchard near community where most houses are not fortified; no injuries reported

A Qassam rocket fired from the northern Gaza Strip exploded Monday morning in an open area near a community in the Shaar Hanegev Regional Council. There were no reports of injuries or damage.


Three mortar shells were fired at the Shaar Hanegev Regional Council on Sunday.


The rocket exploded in an orchard near a community where most of the houses are unfortified. The government has refused to fund the fortification, claiming the community is located more than 4.5 kilometers (2.8 miles) from the border fence – 100 meters (328 feet) less than the criteria set by the State.


The council had petitioned the High Court to instruct the State to fortify the distant communities as well.


"Today's rocket fire, as in the past, proves that the rockets continue to land in this area as well, on an almost regular basis. The government should have fortified the community," the council's security officer, Yoav Peled, told Ynet.


"There has been a certain alert here recently due to the rocket fire in the past few weeks. Unfortunately, this is a routine we are familiar with."


On Wednesday it was reported that Egypt had relayed a message to the Hamas leadership in Gaza that the Israeli army might launch a military offensive if the rocket and mortar fire from the Strip continued.


"Egypt told Hamas that the situation in the Strip was very similar to the situation in December 2008," said a source involved in the talks, addressing the tense period before Operation Cast Lead.


He added that "Hamas is not interested in another escalation, unless it is dragged into it."



פרסום ראשון: 01.17.11, 08:33
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