Jerusalem: 180 rocket attacks were launched on Israel between Wednesday night and Thursday early morning from the Gaza Strip. The Palestinian extremist organisation Hamas, who is in control of the Gaza Strip had launched these attacks and has also accepted the responsibility for the attacks. Out of the 180 rockets fired, 30 were intercepted by the Israeli air defence systems. Six of the rockets landed in the southern Israeli city of Sderot, injuring 11 people.
The situation on the Israel-Palestine border has been worsening since the last few months. The Israeli area bordering the Gaza Strip is being attacked by kite bombs, balloon bombs, rockets and mortars by Palestinian protestors. These attacks are causing huge losses to the Israeli farmers and it is said that hundreds of acres of agricultural land has been destroyed in these attacks. Hamas had warned of intensifying the attacks in the near future. The extremist organisation had initiated these activities following the United States’ declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the subsequent relocation of the US embassy to the holy city.
The Israeli military had retaliated against these Hamas activities with air raids. However, its activities have been observed to only be intensifying rather than being curbed. A few weeks ago, Egypt had mediated a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. But on the very next day, Hamas and the Islamic Jihad, the extremist organisations in the Gaza Strip, launched 80 rocket attacks into the Israeli border areas. This nullified the ceasefire and the protests at the Israeli border which had been continuing for the last three months, have also worsened.
Saying that we will stop short at nothing but the complete annihilation of Israel, Hamas had proclaimed that they had thousands of youth willing to sacrifice their lives for the purpose. Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman had warned that if there are any further attacks from the Gaza Strip, Israel will carry out dreadful attacks which would be unparalleled in history. Within only a few days of this warning, Hamas has initiated rocket and mortar attacks on Israel from Wednesday night.
Hamas had launched nearly 180 rockets and mortars into Israel till Thursday morning. 30 of these rockets were neutralised by the Israeli air defence system – Iron Dome.
Even so, the 25 rockets that landed in the southern city of the Sderot have reportedly injured 11 Israeli citizens including 2 pregnant women.
Hamas has accepted the responsibility for the attacks. Two of Hamas’ soldiers were killed in the air raids carried out by Israel on Tuesday. In its statements Hamas claimed that their attacks were to avenge the deaths of their soldiers. Hamas has strongly justified the attacks saying that, ‘We had warned Israel of teaching it a lesson for the attacks, and we have taken it to fruition.’
Meanwhile, the United Nations(UN) has denounced the Hamas rocket attacks and expressed concern over the ongoing conflict between the Gaza Strip and Israel. Especially over the attacks on the Israeli civilian settlements and has expressed hope that Israel and Hamas will exercise restraint.