As many as five rockets were fired into Israel from Gaza this evening, the result of a feud among Palestinian terrorists, The Times of Israel reported today.
One projectile was located near Gan Yavneh, minutes after the red-alert sirens sounded in the Lachish region and Ashdod, the Israeli army said in a statement.
Other reports put the number of rockets launched as high as five. The Israel Defense Forces did not say how many rockets were fired, but indicated it was more than one. Many residents of southern Israel reported hearing multiple blasts. …
There was no immediate claim of responsibility from Hamas or other terror groups in the coastal enclave. An Israeli official said Jerusalem holds Hamas responsible for all attacks launched from the enclave.
The Times reported that there was an internal dispute in Palestinian Islamic Jihad that led to the rocket attacks.
A later report, citing sources in Gaza, filled in the details.
Sources in Gaza say the Islamic Jihad recently appointed a new commander to oversee the northern region of the coastal enclave. The new commander was supposed to start his new position today officially, but his predecessor opposed it, sparking clashes between the two commanders’ supporters.
The new commander’s men then kidnapped two operatives working under the former commander and, in retaliation, the predecessor’s followers decided to fire rockets at Israel.
Hamas, the terrorist group that rules Gaza, has reportedly detained suspects in the rocket attacks.
Fearing retaliation from Israel, Hamas has evacuated a number of its bases and headquarters.
This is the first times Grad rockets have been fired at Israel since the end of Operation Protective Edge last summer. It is also the first time since Israel’s Independence Day last month that rockets have been fired into Israel.
Although there has been little rocket fire from Gaza since the end of Operation Protective Edge, Hamas has been busy rebuilding its terror infrastructure, including terror tunnels. The terrorist organization has also been reportedly testing advanced rockets. Earlier this month, an explosion at a Hamas terror training camp injured over 50 people; a few days later, a terrorist was reported killed in a tunnel collapse.
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