Israel launched a retaliatory strike against “underground terror infrastructure” in a Hamas compound in Gaza early Thursday morning, after a rocket from Gaza was intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome aerial defense system just after midnight on Wednesday.
Residents of Nirim in the Eshkol region east of Gaza were sent running for cover when the incoming rocket activated warning sirens, and reported hearing explosions. No Israelis were wounded.
The rocket was fired just hours after Israel closed the fishing zone off the Gaza coast in response to a barrage of incendiary balloons were launched from the Strip earlier in the day. At least six fires have been attributed to the balloons, with another exploding above an Israeli town. Severe damage was reported to agricultural lands as a result of the attacks.
“IDF fighter jets attacked an underground terrorist infrastructure in a military compound belonging to the Hamas terrorist organization in the southern Gaza Strip,” the IDF tweeted early Thursday morning. “The attack was carried out in response to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip earlier in the night.”
The balloon and rocket launches are a breach of the ceasefire reached between Israel and Hamas in May. Israel also extended the Gaza fishing zone as part of that agreement.