Israeli airstrikes hit Hamas in Gaza after rockets fired at Israel

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Israeli airstrikes hit Hamas in Gaza after rockets fired at Israel

The rocket attacks came after an Israeli army raid in the West Bank left 11 Palestinians killed and over 100 injured.

Nablus, West Bank. REUTERS/Raneen Sawafta
Nablus, West Bank. REUTERS/Raneen Sawafta

Israeli airstrikes hit Hamas positions in Gaza overnight after rockets were fired at southern Israel. 

The IDF said it struck a weapons manufacturing site and a military compound belonging to Hamas in the central and northern part of the Gaza Strip.

Six rockets were fired from Gaza at surrounding border communities as well as the cities of Ashkelon and Sderot around 4:00 AM.

The rocket attacks were seen as retaliation for an Israeli army raid in the West Bank city if Nablus on Wednesday, where 11 Palestinians were killed and over 100 injured, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry.

The Israeli army entered the the Old City of Nablus to arrest suspects in previous terror attacks, resulting in severe clashes. Ambulances were seen evacuating wounded while Palestinians threw Molotov cocktails and stones at Israeli army jeeps.

Israel’s Shin Bet intelligence agency had located the house were the suspects were hiding, leading Israeli soldiers to surround the building. After refusing to surrender, the three suspects were killed in a shootout with the soldiers.

Two of the Palestinians killed in the raid belonged to the “Lion’s Den” terror group, which was created last year with the purpose of preventing Israeli soldiers from raiding Nablus. Members of the group have also engaged in terror attacks against Israelis in the northern part of the West Bank.

Islamic Jihad promised that retaliation for the army raid would come “at any moment and from everywhere.”

The Palestinian Authority also condemned the raid, with Palestinian Civil Affairs Minister Hussein al-Sheikh calling it “another massacre” carried out by Israel.

Hamas said its patience was “running out,” leading Israeli security experts to warn that Israel might face rocket attacks from Gaza in retaliation.

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir applauded the Israeli “heroes” of the army operation, ordering a reinforcement of police officers throughout the country in preparation for possible terror attacks by Palestinians.

Last month, following a similar deadly army raid in Jenin which also left 10 Palestinians killed, two terror attacks hit East Jerusalem, killing seven Israelis near a synagogue. The attacks were seen as a direct response to the army raid the day before.

Wednesday’s army operation in Nablus was also applauded by Opposition Leader Yair Lapid and National Unity party leader Benny Gantz.

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