Israel hits Gaza with air strikes after rocket firing by Palestinian militants

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) - Israeli air raids hit the Gaza Strip 12 times overnight, wounding two people after rockets fired from the Palestinian territory caused a fire in southern Israel, sources from both sides said.

The strikes late on Saturday and early on Sunday targeted sites across the coastal enclave, slightly wounding two people and damaging property in Gaza City, an interior ministry spokesman in Gaza said.

"There were a total of 12 strikes in two stages," an Israeli army spokesman told AFP, saying the raids targeted several "sites of terrorist activity".

The strikes came after Palestinian militant groups in Gaza fired 12 rockets at southern Israel on Friday and Saturday. One of the rockets hit an industrial zone in Sderot in southern Israel on Saturday, setting a building ablaze but without causing casualties, police said.

Twenty-five rockets and mortar rounds have been fired from Gaza in the past two weeks, the army said, and the Israeli military has retaliated with nighttime raids.

The border between Gaza and Israel has been tense since the disappearance of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank on June 12. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accused Islamist movement Hamas of kidnapping the teens, and launched sweeping search operations to find them.

Since the beginning of the search, five Palestinians have been killed in the west Bank and nearly 400 arrested, mostly Hamas members.

Register here to get free digital access to The Straits Times until Aug 9, 2015.
Comments