Israeli Aircrafts Attack Hamas Targets in Gaza After Projectile Fired Into Israel

One Palestinian killed, another critically wounded in clashes along border ■ Israel arrests armed Palestinians who crossed fence

File photo: An explosion is seen during Israeli air strikes in Gaza, January 22, 2019.
Ahmed Zakot/Reuters

Israeli aircrafts attacked Friday overnight several targets in the Gaza Strip, hours after a projectile was fired from Gaza at Israel, the Israeli military said, following a day of clashes along the border.

The Israel Defense Forces' Spokesperson Unit added in a statement a Hamas military compound in southern Gaza and underground facilities in the north were attacked.

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The ministry said 41 Palestinians were wounded by live fire, including 15 minors, two women, four paramedics and two journalists. It was the 50th consecutive week of Palestinian protests at the fence.

The Israeli military confirmed a projectile was fired from Gaza at Israel on Friday evening, after rocket alert sirens sounded in southern Israel near the Gaza Strip. A statement from the Eshkol Regional Council states that a projectile fell in an open area between two communities in southern Israel, causing no casaulties or damage.  

Palestinian protesters holding national flags walk past burning tires during clashes with Israeli soldiers near the fence along the border with Israel on March 8, 2019.
MAHMUD HAMS / AFP

Earlier the same day, Israeli army forces arrested two Palestinians who crossed into Israel from the northern Gaza Strip. The Palestinians were apprehended after forces were summoned to the northern border fence to conduct searches, during which several local roads were closed and soldiers were deployed to communities and put on alert.

A search of the area and the Palestinians' clothes revealed a knife and a grenade, the IDF said. The weapons were transferred to security forces. 

An IDF tank fired on a Hamas post in northern Gaza on Thursday, in response to fire towards security infrastructure next to the fence, which left no casualties. In the early morning, the Gaza Health Ministry reported that a 15-year-old Palestinian was killed by IDF fire in clashes on the border.

On Wednesday, rocket sirens sounded in the Eshkol Regional Council border community after a rocket was launched from northern Gaza. The IDF said that the Iron Dome aerial defense system was activated following the launch, and the Israeli Air Force struck Hamas targets in southern Gaza in response.

Tension between Hamas and the IDF has increased over past weeks, caused by the return of incendiary balloon launches from the Gaza Strip into Israeli territory. In addition, Hamas has also renewed its nighttime activities on the Gaza border fence.