Israel conducted a series of airstrikes against Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday.
After Hamas fired more than 150 rockets into southern Israel, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) retaliated by launching more than 140 airstrikes on Gaza, according to an RT News report on Thursday.
“IDF fighter jets targeted over 20 terror sites in military compounds and in a Hamas training camp. Among the sites targeted were a weapons manufacturing and storage facility, a complex used for the Hamas naval force and a military compound used for rocket-launching experiments,” the IDF said in a statement, which was translated by RT.
Three people were killed by the Israeli strikes: a pregnant woman and her toddler, as well as a Hamas militant. Approximately 19 Palestinians were reported to be injured, and another seven were injured on the Israeli side.
The latest missile conflict began after an IDF tank reportedly fired upon Hamas sites in Gaza in retaliation for an attack on an Israeli construction vehicle along the border.
IDF said it received a steady barrage of missile fire from the Gaza Strip of approximately 150 rockets. The IDF responded by conducting 12 raids on Palestinian sites, launching at least 140 of their own rockets.
“Five training camps were targeted, as well as a main warehouse and a meeting point used by the senior commanders of the Khan Yunis Brigade,” the IDF said. “Thus far, over 140 of Hamas’ strategic military sites have been targeted.”
Israel’s Iron Dome intercepted 25 of the 150 rockets fired by militants. Most of the missiles reportedly landed in uninhabited locations, though at least four struck the city of Sderot.
Escalation between #Hamas & #Israel continues.
🔺 Approx. 150 rockets launched from Gaza at Israel
🔺 Iron Dome intercepted 25 launches
🔺 IAF conducted approx. 140 targeted strikes against Hamas assets. Including the first hot interception of a rocket launching terror cell. pic.twitter.com/steiNfBKmR
— LTC (R) Peter Lerner (@LTCPeterLerner) August 9, 2018
“Hamas is responsible and bears the consequences for the ongoing events,” the IDF stated.
The attacks come as Egypt is leading efforts in an attempt to reach a cease-fire between the two sides. It’s unclear what the impact of the conflict will be on the peace negotiations.
U.N. official Nickolay Mladenov, who is involved in the cease-fire negotiations, voiced concern over the latest conflict, saying he is “deeply alarmed” by the rockets launched toward Israel. He reiterated a warning he’d made for months prior, saying that the “humanitarian, security and political crisis in Gaza risks a devastating conflict that nobody wants.”
“If the current escalation however is not contained immediately, the situation can rapidly deteriorate with devastating consequences for all people,” he added.