Friday, January 08, 2010

IAF strikes targets in Gaza Strip

THE JERUSALEM POST Jan. 7, 2010, by Yaakov Katz and staff:

The IAF struck targets in the Gaza Strip Thursday night...apparently in response to the firing of a Katyusha rocket which landed near Ashkelon earlier in the night.

...The rocket landed in an open field, causing no casualties or damage. Air sirens sounded throughout the area, causing panic among the residents, who for the past year have enjoyed a period of quiet.

Earlier Thursday, terrorists in Gaza fired an anti-tank missile at IDF troops near the periphery fence. Soldiers returned fire toward the source of the attack. No casualties were reported.

That attack came after at least ten mortar shells launched from Gaza hit open areas in Israel's South. No one was wounded and no damage was reported in the mortar shell barrage. The Popular Resistance Committee claimed responsibility for firing the shells, saying they were in revenge for an IAF strike several days ago that killed two of the group's men.

Following the attacks, the Defense Ministry closed the Kerem Shalom border crossing until further notice. Dozens of aid-carrying trucks were waiting on the Israeli side to enter the Gaza Strip.

Also on Thursday, the Israel Air Force dropped several thousand leaflets over the Gaza Strip in several locations, warning residents of the Strip not to come within 300 meters of the border fence between Gaza and Israel and to avoid cooperating with terror operatives.

Another leaflet called on Gaza residents not to sit idly by while operatives digging tunnels under the Gaza Strip's southern border were putting their lives in peril. The leaflets contained a phone number and email address for Gazans to report those involved in digging the smuggling tunnels.

The mortar shell barrage came a day after OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Yoav Galant warned that the quiet in Israel's South may be temporary. It's true that we are after the first rains and the sun is shining - but one can see dark clouds in the distance," the general said during a tour with heads of regional councils marking a year since Operation Cast Lead....
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