Israel says it intercepted rocket fired from Gaza

The rocket launch came as Israeli-Palestinian tensions heightened following clashes in Al Aqsa Mosque compound



An Israeli soldier guards an opening in the West Bank separation barrier that was reinforced with barbed wire to prevent Palestinians from crossing into Israel. — AP file
An Israeli soldier guards an opening in the West Bank separation barrier that was reinforced with barbed wire to prevent Palestinians from crossing into Israel. — AP file

By Agencies

Published: Mon 18 Apr 2022, 10:03 PM

The Israeli military said it intercepted a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip into Israeli territory on Monday.

It was the first time in months that a rocket has been fired into Israel from the blockaded Palestinian territory controlled by the Hamas militant group.

“Sirens sounded in the area surrounding the Gaza Strip. One rocket was fired from the Gaza Strip into Israeli territory. The rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome Air Defence System,” the military said in a statement.

Monday’s launch came as Israeli-Palestinian tensions have been heightened following clashes in Al Aqsa Mosque compound and a wave of attacks and military raids.

Hours earlier, the leader of the Islamic Jihad militant group had issued a brief, cryptic warning, condemning Israeli “violations” in Jerusalem.

“The (Israeli) enemy’s threats to halt facilitations for Gaza can’t silence us from what’s happening in Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank,” said Ziad Al Nakhala, who is based outside the Palestinian territories.

Islamic Jihad boasts an arsenal of rockets, but Israel holds Hamas responsible for all projectiles fired from the territory and usually carries out airstrikes in response.

Earlier on Monday, Israeli troops shot and wounded two Palestinians during clashes that broke out during an arrest raid in the occupied West Bank.

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The Israeli military said it arrested 11 Palestinians in operations across the territory overnight. In a raid in the village of Yamun, near the city of Jenin, the army said dozens of Palestinians hurled rocks and explosives at troops.

Soldiers “responded with live ammunition” toward “suspects who hurled explosive devices,” the military said. The Palestinian Health Ministry said two men were hospitalised after being critically wounded.

Israel has carried out a wave of arrest raids and other operations in recent weeks that it says are aimed at preventing further attacks after Palestinian assailants killed at least 14 people inside Israel. Two of the attackers came from in and around Jenin, which has long been a bastion of armed struggle against Israeli rule.

At least 25 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in recent weeks. Many had carried out attacks or were involved in clashes, but an unarmed woman and a lawyer who appears to have been a bystander were also among those killed.


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