Rockets fired from Gaza land in southern Israel

Marcy Oster

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Rockets fired from the Gaza Strip targeted southern Israeli communities.

One rocket fired Friday evening landed in Sderot in southern Israel, reportedly damaging a bus and a private home. Later Friday night a rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system over Ashkelon. Code red alarms sounded in southern Israel in advance of the rocket strikes, sending residents running for bomb shelters.

An Iron Dome battery had been moved to the Ashkelon area late last week, after a defense situation assessment found that the recent upsurge in violence on the Temple Mount and in other areas of Jerusalem, as well as the rearrest of recovered Palestinian hunger striker Mohammed Allaan, could set off a new round of rocket attacks from Gaza.

The rocket that struck Sderot was the 11th rocket to hit Israeli territory since January 2015.

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Following the Friday night attacks, the Israel Air Force early on Saturday morning targeted three of what it called “terror sites” in the northern Gaza Strip, the Israel Defense Forces spokesman’s unit said in a statement.

A Palestinian Salafist group affiliated with the Islamic State, called the Sheikh Omar Hadid Brigade, took responsibility for the rocket attacks late on Saturday night.

At least two rockets fired from Gaza early Sunday morning failed to cross the border with Israel and landed in Gazan territory, according to reports.

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