rockets - AFP - April 10 2011
An Iron Dome missile responding to a rocket launch from the Gaza Strip. Photo by AFP
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The escalation in southern Israel continued Sunday morning when six rockets and a barrage of mortars hit near the city of Ashkelon. The Iron Dome system successfully shot down three rockets.

Rockets also fell in several open areas, and hit a school building in Be'er Sheva, causing no injuries as students are currently on summer break.

Earlier, a Grad rocket directly struck a home in the southern city of Be'er Sheva on Saturday night, killing one person and seriously wounding four. 26 people are being treated for shock.

Another Grad rocket fired at Be'er Sheva was intercepted by the Iron Dome system.
Also on Saturday evening, two children were lightly wounded when four Grad rockets landed in Ofakim.

The Popular Resistance Committees claimed responsibility for the Be'er Sheva rocket attacks while Hamas claimed responsibility for the Ofakim rocket attacks.

More than 70 rockets and mortar shells were fired at southern Israel from the Gaza Strip since Thursday night, killing one person and injuring a large number of people. Extensive property damage has also been reported.

On Saturday night, the forum of eight senior cabinet ministers convened to discuss the escalation in the south. A senior diplomatic official in Jerusalem said participants discussed the possibility of additional military strikes against terror organizations in the Gaza Strip. The anonymous source also stressed containment efforts. “No one wants an Operation Cast Lead 2,” he said.