Two IDF Soldiers, Civilian Lightly Hurt as Gaza Mortars Hit Negev

14 mortar shells, five rockets strike South; IDF soldiers exchange fire with militants on Gaza border.

Two Israel Defense Forces soldiers and an Israeli civilian were lightly wounded on Sunday when four mortar shells fired from the Gaza Strip exploded near them in the Sha'ar Hanegev region of the western Negev.

Palestinian militants in Gaza fired at least four Qassam rockets and 14 mortar shells at southern Israel over the course of the day.

Three rockets struck the Eshkol region, two of them landing in open fields and the third between two kindergartens. A fourth rocket struck an open field in the Sdot Negev Regional Council area. No casualties or damage were reported in any of the strikes.

Four mortar shells struck the Eshkol region of the western Negev earlier on Sunday, as well. No injuries or damages were caused.

On Sunday morning, Israel Defense Forces soldiers exchanged fire with militants near the Kissufim crossing on the border with the Gaza Strip. No casualties were reported in the incident.

The cross-border attacks came as Al-Arabiya TV Sunday quoted Hamas sources as saying that the Islamist militant group has accepted an Egyptian proposal for a year-long truce with Israel in Gaza starting on Thursday.

On Saturday morning one Grad rocket struck south of Ashkelon after a Color Red alert sounded in the city.

The rockets have demonstrated the fragility of a cease-fire that ended Israel's devastating Gaza offensive on January 18.

Israel halted the operation after saying its goals had been achieved. But Hamas declared victory and militants have kept up sporadic attacks.

Since the cease-fire, militants have fired rockets into Israel and killed one soldier in a border attack. Israel has conducted retaliatory strikes and pounded tunnels Hamas uses to smuggle in weapons from Egypt. Israeli forces have also killed three men Palestinians identified as farmers in violence along the Gaza-Israel border.