Israel under intensive rocket-fire amid IAF retaliation

Palestinian Islamists have launched, since yesterday evening, more than sixty rockets from the Gaza Strip towards Israel’s southern communities. The first barrage of rockets came amid a wide-scale Israeli bombardment across the Hamas-controlled enclave, which the IDF referred to as “retaliation to Monday-morning’s rocket fire on central Israel that hit a residential structure, injuring seven civilians.”

The IDF said it responded to the heinous Palestinian attack by targeting “a number of Hamas military compounds in (the neighborhoods of) Al-Shati, Beit Hanoun, Shuja’iyya, and additional locations throughout the Gaza Strip,” including the “the office of Hamas Chairman, Ismail Haniyeh in the Gaza neighborhood of Rimal.” Furthermore, the IDF destroyed the Hamas’ headquarters in Tzabra, the organization’s Interior Security offices and what it classified as “a secret (Hamas) intelligence facility.”

While the Hamas leadership went into hiding prior to the Israeli bombardment, its operatives sought to counter the Israeli attack with two separate barrages of intensive rocket-fire.

Despite the IDF’S recently declared preparedness for the anticipated escalation, one residential structure in the southern Israeli city of Sderot sustained a direct hit.

Thankfully, the rocket failed to explode, and the household residents were in a bomb shelter when the projectile penetrated their living-room. Other than this incident, the IDF Spokesperson’s unit underscored that most incoming projectiles exploded in open areas, while the remainder were intercepted by Iron Dome anti-rocket Defense batteries.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu returned to Israel this afternoon, and immediately upon landing travelled to the IDF headquarters in Tel Aviv for the purpose of conducting consultations with the top brass of the country’s defense establishment.

Before his departure, the Israeli leader emphasized that the upcoming national elections, that are scheduled for the 9th of April, will not affect Israel’s security considerations.

Netanyahu stressed that Jerusalem “will deal with these issues” and delivered a threat to the rulers of Gaza, saying: “We gave a very powerful response. (And) Hamas needs to know that we won’t hesitate to go in [to Gaza] and take any required steps.”