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Israeli air force strikes Gaza after rocket hits Israel - Daily News Egypt

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Israeli air force strikes Gaza after rocket hits Israel

No injuries or deaths reported in both incidents


On 26 August 2014, Egypt negotiated a ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian groups after the 50-day "Operation Protective Edge", which left hundreds dead. (Photo Handout from the Palestinian Ministry of Interior in Gaza)
On 26 August 2014, Egypt negotiated a ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian groups after the 50-day “Operation Protective Edge”, which left hundreds dead.
(Photo Handout from the Palestinian Ministry of Interior in Gaza)

The Israeli air force struck a target in northern Gaza’s Beit Hanoun neighbourhood on Wednesday morning, Israeli and Palestinian sources confirmed.

The Israeli attack came after a missile was fired from Gaza into the Israel-controlled Western Negev. No groups have yet claimed responsibility for firing the rocket.

There were no injuries reported after both incidents.

Israeli Defense Force spokesperson, Avichay Adraee, said the air force “targeted the area from which the rocket was fired” close to the Israeli Kibbutz, Yad Mordechai, Tuesday night.

Israeli soldiers deployed on the southern Gaza border shot and injured two Palestinians on 22 June.

Hamas spokesperson Bassem Naim told Daily News Egypt that this takes place on an almost daily basis, adding that “encounters take place mostly with the Palestinian farmers” that work on the borders.

“These encounters between the soldiers and the farmers are repetitive,” Naim said.

According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, which recorded 51 shootings, arrests and incursions along the coast in May, Israeli forces have opened fire on Palestinians in Gaza “repeatedly” since the ceasefire agreement.

The Israeli authorities banned Gazans from crossing the Erez border crossing for Friday prayers in Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa mosque over the weekend. Adraee wrote that the decision was made due to “security concerns”.

Naim said that while Israel says it is doing this because of the rocket, the decision matches their collective punishment practices.

Meanwhile, Egyptian authorities have opened the Rafah border crossing for a three-day period. The border was also open for a one-week period in early June, preceded by three-month closure.

Because the crossing is only open for three days “after a very long closure period”, there is “an accumulation of people that are waiting to leave”, Naim said.

There are approximately 15,000 people currently waiting to leave Gaza. “Most of them are people that really need to leave; many of them are people who were injured last summer and they need medical attention,” Naim said.

He added: “Ordinary people that don’t need medical help won’t try to leave Gaza in the first place because they know how difficult that would be and that they might not be able to come back.”

According to Gisha, a legal centre for the freedom of movement, by the end of May 2011, Egypt had announced the opening of the Rafah crossing “on a regular basis for all residents of Gaza carrying Palestinian passports and identity cards, with certain restrictions on male passengers aged 18 to 40”.

In addition, by the first half of 2013, there was a monthly average of 20,000 entries. This quickly declined when on 5 July 2013, when “Egypt once again restricted travel through the crossing, shutting it down almost completely in October 2014”.

When Israel launched its campaign “Operation Protective Edge” on Gaza in the summer of 2014, only “certain categories” of people were allowed to exit Gaza. These included “injured individuals, urgent medical cases, Palestinians with dual citizenship and individuals who have foreign residency status or foreign visas”.

On 26 August 2014, Egypt negotiated a ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian groups after the 50-day “Operation Protective Edge”.

The United Nations Gaza Commission of Inquiry stated on 22 June that it found “credible allegations of war crimes committed in 2014 by both Israel and Palestinian groups”.

In addition, the investigative committee found that Israel used more than 6,000 airstrikes, and approximately 50,000 tank and artillery shells. The Israeli attacks killed 1,462 Palestinians civilians, a third of whom were children.

The committee also stated that Palestinian armed groups fired 4,881 rockets and 1,753 mortars that killed six civilians and injured 1,600.

Naim criticised the UN report for “equating between the oppressor and the oppressed. Israel’s war crimes exceed anything Palestinians have done”.

The Egyptian military has also destroyed thousands of tunnels on the crossing after 2013 to maintain a “buffer zone” between Gaza and Egypt in the midst of ongoing turmoil in the Sinai Peninsula.

 

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