The Israel Air Force renewed its attacks against targets in north Gaza early Tuesday in retaliation to the continued Qassam rocket fire at Israeli communities.
No injuries were reported in the strike.
IDF sources said helicopters attacked a building in Gaza city that serves as the headquarters for the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, Fatah’s military wing, involved in the planning and launching of Qassams and bomb toward Israel.
The IAF attacked another building belonging to the group in Beit Lahiya, located in the northern part of the Strip; which serves as the group’s recruitment center.
In Beit Hanoun a missile struck a bridge that, according to the IDF, was part of an access route to Qassam launching pads. Later, six more access routes were attacked as well.
“The IDF is determined to continue utilizing all means necessary against any group that carries out or contributes to terror attacks aimed at harming Israel,” a military source said.
'We are not entering a mini-war'
Earlier IDF officials estimated that the improved weather conditions would permit the army to step up its activity against the Qassam rocket fire. The aerial attacks on access roads and infrastructure in Gaza are expected to continue, as well as the targeted killings of Qassam launchers and manufacturers.
On Monday two Qassams landed in Israeli territory; one landed south of Ashkelon, while the other landed near a Kibbutz Sa’ad kindergarten during a Hanukkah party; no injuries were reported in the incidents.
Meanwhile, Ynet has learned that the IDF plans to distribute leaflets in Gaza stating the damage that the Qassam rocket fire toward Israel is inflicting on the Palestinians themselves; the leaflets will apparently include a warning that the IDF will harm anyone involved in rocket fire aimed at Israeli communities.
In the leaflets the army will also clarify that it does not wish to hurt innocent civilians and that only terrorists were targeted in the attacks on Gaza.
Security establishment sources reiterated that Israel has no intention of opening a major military front in Gaza, adding that a large-scale ground operation is not in the cards.
“We are not entering a mini-war or operation,” a source said. “Our intent is to reduce the (Qassam) fire as much as possible and make the other side (Palestinians) realize that we will not accept it. Our activity is dependant on the other side – when the firing will stop, so will our attacks.”
The IDF may also approach Palestinian police officers stationed mainly in north Gaza, where many Qassam attacks emanate from, and ask them to leave the area as their presence may hinder Israel’s military plans.
The IDF is also planning to expedite the shielding of communities surrounding Gaza from Qassam fire.