Seven rockets hit southern Israel early this morning, in spite of the truce announced by Hamas.
Two rockets were fired from Gaza towards Ashkelon overnight Thursday. One rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defence system, while the second rocket landed in an open area south of the city. No injuries were reported. At least 70 rockets have landed in Israel’s southern region since Tuesday afternoon.
Following the attack on Ashkelon, Mayor Benny Vaknin ordered local elementary schools to remain closed Thursday. The mayor reached the decision following consultations with security establishment officials and parent committee representatives.
The Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigade, Hamas’s military wing announced on Wednesday evening that they were willing to accept an Egyptian-brokered cease-fire to end the current round of rocket fire into Israel providing that Israel ceased its air strikes on Gaza. “The current confrontation with the enemy was kept to a minimal exchange of fire – and it is best that the Israeli leaders understand that,” the Izz al-Din al-Qassam statement said. Despite the statement, at approximately 11 pm yesterday three mortars were fired towards open areas in the Hof Ashkelon Regional Council.
The current round of violence began on Monday when two Islamic Jihad militants were killed while trying to target IDF vehicles. Six Palestinians were killed in an Israel Air Force strikes in Gaza since then.