JERUSALEM, Israel – The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced Wednesday that terrorists in Gaza fired more than 100 rockets into Israel Tuesday night and Wednesday morning following the death of an Islamic Jihad prisoner who succumbed after 86 days on a hunger strike.
The rocket and mortar attack on regions around the Gaza Strip began Tuesday afternoon as Israeli children were leaving school. Two of the rockets landed in population centers, and three foreign workers were injured at a construction site in the city of Sderot.
IDF Spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari said Israel’s Iron Dome system intercepted 90 percent of the rockets headed for populated areas.
Israel retaliated with overnight air strikes on 16 Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in the Gaza Strip, hitting training and weapons production sites, a tunnel and a Hamas naval commando base. Palestinian sources said one man was killed.
A cease-fire took effect early Wednesday, but Hagari said, “We are in a continuous assessment of the situation. We returned the situation to normal on the home front when we saw this was possible… Everything is open, everything is on the table.”
The attacks against Israel began shortly after it was announced that Islamic Jihad official Khader Adnan had died while behing held in an Israeli prison. According to Reuters, the 45-year-old Adnan, prison officials said, “refused to undergo medical tests and receive medical treatment” and “was found unconscious in his cell” at Nitzan Prison in Ramle early Tuesday morning.
Palestinian Islamic Jihad threatened that Israel will “pay the price” for Adnan’s death.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held a security briefing Tuesday evening, and he received some rare backing from opposition leader Yair Lapid who tweeted that “the opposition will back the government in any military action that will bring quiet and security to residents of the south.”
Beleaguered residents near the Gaza Strip are growing weary of what they believe are weak responses by the government to the frequent attacks.
Efrat Amram’s house was hit by a rocket. The family survived the attack, but she told Israel National News, “We need to put an end to this. It’s not my role to know what the end is, but raising children for twenty years in such a reality is simply incomprehensible. This is no longer a matter of rounds of fighting, but a day-to-day reality. We need to eliminate senior terrorists in Gaza and create deterrence, absorb every way that will bring us back to deterrence and security in our hands.”
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