First modification: 07/04/2021 – 04:27
The Israeli Army confirmed that for the second day in a row it launched retaliatory airstrikes against the Gaza Strip, after the Hamas group launched more incendiary balloons from the enclave. In addition, Israeli troops in the occupied West Bank fired at a suspected Palestinian aggressor, who was killed.
New exchanges of hostilities break the tense calm between Israelis and Palestinians that had prevailed in Gaza for the past two weeks.
This Saturday, and for the second day in a row, Israeli planes fired on the Strip, hitting a weapons manufacturing facility and a rocket launcher.
According to the Israeli Army, the action was carried out in response to the incendiary balloons sent from the Palestinian enclave towards Israel in the last hours.
“Army combat aircraft attacked a weapons manufacturing site and a rocket launcher” belonging to Hamas, which has de facto controlled the enclave since 2007, confirmed a military spokesperson.
In response to arson balloons launched at Israel, the IDF struck a weapons manufacturing site and a rocket launcher belonging to Hamas tonight.
The IDF will continue to respond firmly to all terror attempts emanating from the Gaza Strip.
– Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) July 3, 2021
Members of Hamas, the militant Islamist movement that controls Gaza, confirmed that the two attacked sites belonged to their group. In addition, there a man was seriously injured, according to medical sources.
Since a ceasefire was declared on May 21, ending 11 days of fierce fighting between Israel and Hamas, the new Israeli Executive led by Naftali Bennet broke the truce on June 16 with new attacks.
In turn, balloons loaded with incendiary material have sporadically been launched from Gaza across the border, causing fires that have burned fields in Israel.
The Israeli Army emphasized that it will continue to “respond firmly” against what it called “terrorist attempts from the Gaza Strip.”
Clashes in the West Bank
The new outbreak of violence was also registered during this day in the West Bank. At least one Palestinian was killed and two others were injured.
Israel acknowledged that its troops fired at who it pointed to as an alleged aggressor.
According to the statements of a military spokesman, the events occurred as soldiers tried to disperse clashes between Israeli and Palestinian settlers near the West Bank village of Qusra. The troops then saw a man throw an explosive device at them from a roof and “responded with fire on the suspect to eliminate the danger,” the spokesperson said.
However, the official Palestinian news agency Wafa reported that the death occurred as residents of the village were defending themselves against an attack by “extremist settlers.”
He identified the deceased as 20-year-old Mohamad Farid Hasan, who was killed by gunshots to the chest.
The clashes, mainly around the villages and towns north of Qusra, are in response to the construction of the new Israeli settlement of Eviatar.
Although, following an agreement with the new Israeli government, the residents of Eviatar evacuated the site on Friday, the Army will remain there and operate a military base until the legal status of the area, a Palestinian territory occupied since 1967 by Israel, is resolved.
With Reuters and EFE