Israeli Army Fires at Gaza Cell That Launched Drone Into Israel

Escalation follows rockets fired from Gaza and an Israeli strike overnight, after two Palestinians killed by Israeli forces during border protests

Palestinian protesters clas with Israeli forces following a demonstration along the border with Israel east of Bureij in the central Gaza Strip, September 6, 2019

An IDF aircraft fired at a Gaza cell that launched a drone from southern Gaza into Israeli territory Saturday afternoon, the Israeli army said.

The drone dropped what seems to be an explosive into the border fence area and immediately returned to Gaza, an IDF statement said. There are were no Israeli casualties in the incident, but it lightly damaged a military vehicle.

Palestinian sources reported Israeli artillery fire in the southern Gaza Strip, near Rafah, saying it struck a Hamas observation post.

In light of the violence and the upcoming Israeli elections, reports in Gaza say that the Egyptian security delegation will arrive in Gaza next week to meet with senior Hamas officials and de-escalate the situation.   

On Friday night, Israel struck several Hamas targets in Gaza after five rockets were launched from the Strip overnight Friday, targeting Hamas military positions near the Israeli border with aircraft and tank fire.  

Earlier Friday, the Gaza health ministry reported that two Palestinian teenagers were killed by Israeli security forces during clashes near the Gaza border fence on Friday. At least 66 were also wounded in demonstrations along the border, 38 from gunfire.

A few hours later, rocket sirens blared in the southern Israeli city of Sderot. Five rockets were launched from the Gaza Strip, the Israeli army said.

One rocket fell in an open field outside the city, starting a conflagration and causing no casualties, the Israeli army said. Two women were treated for shock following the rocket sirens, the Sderot municipality said.