Israeli Army Strikes Two Hamas Positions in Gaza Strip, IDF Says

The strike was in response to a suspicious cluster of balloons launched from the Strip found near Israeli communities near the Gaza border

FILE Photo: An Israel Defense Force attack on Gaza in October, 2018.
Eliyahu Hershkovitz

An Israel Defense Forces helicopter attacked two Hamas positions in the Gaza Strip Sunday evening in response to a suspicious cluster of balloons  launched from the Strip earlier in the day, the IDF Spokesperson's Unit says. 

Further attacks in Gaza were reported in the southern and central strip. Another report claims the Israel Air Force attacked a Hamas position in the northern Strip. 

Local police were called to Sdot Negev Regional Council earlier Sunday after the balloons were found in an open area. 

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"Hamas is responsible for what is happening in and out of the Gaza Strip. The IDF will continue to act in defense of Israeli citizens and against terror from the Gaza Strip," the IDF said in response. 

The cluster of balloons found near the Sdot Negev Regional Council, January 6, 2019.
Israel Police Spokesperson's Office

Tamir Idan, head of the Sdot Negev Regional Council, said: "The response of the IDF to detonate the explosive device this morning in Sdot Negev was necessary. Hamas pushes the limit and checks Israel's policy of containment and restraint." 

Two weeks ago an Israel Defense Force helicopter struck a Hamas target in southern Gaza after a rocket launched from the Strip fell into an open area near Israel's southern communities.

The border has been relatively quiet the since latest escalation over a month and a half ago when some 460 rockets and missiles were fired from Gaza into Israel. The IDF retaliated by attacking more than 160 targets including buildings belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad, killing a total of seven in the Gaza Strip.