Israel bombs Hamas sites in Gaza over incendiary balloons: army | Gaza News
Palestinians say the balloons are aimed at putting pressure on Israel to ease restrictions on besieged Israeli blockaded territory.
Israeli air force bombed Hamas sites in Gaza in response to incendiary balloons launched from the Palestinian enclave that sparked bushfires in southern Israel, its army said.
There were no immediate reports of casualties in the airstrikes that targeted what the military said early Tuesday was a weapons production facility and rocket launch site owned by Hamas, the group. who runs Gaza.
In a statement, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) confirmed that fighter jets attacked “a Hamas weapons manufacturing site in Khan Younis as well as the entrance to a terrorist tunnel in Jabalya.”
“An underground Hamas rocket launch site, located next to civilian homes and a school in Shujaiya, was also hit,” he added, claiming that “the strikes were in response to the launch of balloons. arsonists by Hamas in Israeli territory ”.
Since an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire ended 11 days of fighting between Israel and Hamas in May, groups in Gaza have sporadically sent balloons laden with incendiary material into Israel, prompting Israeli raids on Hamas facilities.
Palestinians say the balloons are aimed at putting pressure on Israel to ease restrictions on Gaza and allow aid to reach the territory.
Balloons launched on Monday sparked fires in Israeli fields along the Gaza border, the Israeli fire and rescue services said.
Cross-border violence has increased despite Israel’s announcement last week of a resumption of Qatari aid to Gaza, a move that had been seen as strengthening the fragile truce.
Facing protesters in Gaza burning tires and throwing explosives along the border on Saturday, Israeli troops shot and wounded 41 Palestinians, seriously injuring two, medics said.
Palestinian fire seriously injured an Israeli soldier, the army said.
Days before Saturday’s violence, Gaza fighters launched a rocket at Israel which was shot down by its Iron Dome anti-missile system in the first rocket attack since the May 21 ceasefire.
More than 250 Palestinians, many of them civilians and children, and 13 Israelis were killed in the May conflict, in which Israel carried out extensive airstrikes across the coastal enclave, prompting Gaza fighters to fire rockets at Israeli towns.
Israel keeps Gaza under blockade, tightly limiting movement outside the territory that is home to two million Palestinians.
Egypt also maintains restrictions on the enclave. Both cite threats from Hamas for the restrictions.