Gaza rockets targeted Tel Aviv, says IDF

Israeli attack

Israeli attack

Israel's Army Radio reported defense officials took the decision to strike dozens of Gaza Strip terror targets in response to the rocket launchings, which marked the first time Gazan terrorists fired rockets toward Tel Aviv since the 2014 Israel-Gaza War.

Israel said its aircraft hit around 100 Hamas targets, including a complex allegedly used by the group to coordinate militant operations in the occupied West Bank.

In addition, an underground compound to produce rockets was destroyed, several military compounds were attacked as well as a Hamas naval post which is also used to manufacture weapons, the IDF spokesperson reported.

Both Hamas and Islamic Jihad, for their part, have denied any responsibility for the alleged rocket attack, with the latter group issuing a statement holding Israel responsible for the latest escalation. Witnesses said the powerful explosions from the air strikes rocked buildings in Gaza and lit up the skies over the targeted sites.

Pompeo's interview was recorded on Thursday, before Israeli defense officials said the Gaza rockets had been fired by mistake.

Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis, the chief Israeli military spokesman, said the army had been caught off guard by Thursday night's rocket barrage.

After the rocket fire at Tel Aviv, the Israeli army said it was conducted by Hamas. There have been no reports of casualties or damage as of yet.

Shortly before the rocket attack, Hamas police on Thursday violently broke up a rare protest by demonstrators angry about the dire living conditions in Gaza.

Sirens rang out in southern Israel early Friday and the Israeli military said it identified four "launches" from the Gaza Strip. Israel, however, has yet to officially confirm the ceasefire.

Hamdi, 22, who works in a bakery in Gaza, said "since the morning very few people have come compared to normal Friday mornings".

According to Gaza's health ministry, a man and a woman were seriously injured when a missile hit a house in the southern town of Rafah.

It's a first since Israel's 2014 campaign in Gaza. The military said neither rocket was intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome military defense system, though warning systems had operated as required.

An informal truce between Hamas and Israel had led to relative calm, but recent weeks have seen another uptick in violence. As well as the strip's rulers, Hamas, other armed factions operate in the territory, including Islamic Jihad, an Iranian-backed organisation that has launched rockets in the past.

It is possible that the political echelon felt they could not ignore the launch against Israel's most dense population area, regardless of the enemy's intent.

"I suggest to Hamas, don't count on it", he told his Cabinet.

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