Violence between Israel and the Gaza Strip
Over 150 rockets in a week
The border between Israel and the Gaza Strip, which is ruled by the Palestinian militant group Hamas, is wrought with violence. At least one Palestinian has been killed and 20 others are wounded.
Wounded Palestinians were taken to hospitals in Gaza as Israel launched air strikes. On the other side of the border, more than 20 Palestinian rockets crashed into Israel, bringing the week’s total to over 150.
Officials said a six-year-old Palestinian boy was killed in an Israeli strike on Saturday near the town of Khan Younis in the southern part of the Gaza Strip.
The immediate cause
The violence erupted on Monday after gunmen penetrated Israel from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. An Israeli Arab construction worker was killed along with the two infiltrators. A militant Islamic group claimed responsibility for the attack.
Israel says the gunmen are part of a terrorist network in Sinai which is assisted by Palestinian groups in Gaza. This prompted Israeli air strikes on Gaza and Palestinian militants retaliated with rocket attacks.
In a video published by Islamic Jihad, a masked gunman said that if Israel continues its attacks on Gaza, Palestinian fighters will respond with more rocket fire.
A million Israelis within the rocket zone have been warned by authorities to stay home and close to bomb shelters.