IDF strikes office of high-profile Hamas commander in response to Gaza rockets
Israel also orders to cut by half the fuel transferred to the enclave after rockets are fired at the city of Sderot during a festival attended by some 4,000 people; meanwhile, Palestinian group based in Lebanon said 3 Israeli air strikes targeted their military position
At least three rockets have been fired at Israeli communities near the Gaza border including the city of Sderot where some 4,000 people, who were attending a music festival, had been forced to look for shelter in panic as rocket alert sirens wailed.
The shocked crowed watched as two of the rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome defense system. A shrapnel from one of the projectiles fell on the soccer stadium where the event was held, but fortunately no one was hurt.
"IAF fighter jets have attacked several terror targets located in a military compound belonging to Hamas terrorist organization in the northern Gaza Strip, including the office of Hamas military wing's battalion commander,” said the military in a statement. “The attack was carried out in response to the rocket fire overnight.”
Hamas Spokesman Hazim Qasim, however, rejected Israel's accusations, saying neither Hamas nor any other Palestinian factions in the Strip are responsible for the rocket fire. Qasim added that Israelis are shifting the blame onto Hamas in order to justify military strikes on Gaza.
In addition, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ordered to cut in half the amount of fuel being transferred to Gaza via the Kerem Shalom border crossing, starting Monday and until further notice, said Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, Maj. Gen. Kamil Abu Rokon in a statement.
In the meantime, an official from a military position belonging to a Palestinian group in the Lebanese town of Qusaya, near the Syrian border, said three Israeli air strikes targeted it, causing only material damage.
"MK planes (drones) targeted one of our sites with three small rockets. There were no casualties, only material damage," Abu Muhammad told An-Nahar.
The comes after Israel staged airstrikes in Syria on Saturday against what it said were Iranian "killer drones" being readied to attack Israel.
News agencies contributed to this report