A senior army official warned Thursday morning that Israel was nearing a full-blown military confrontation in the Gaza Strip after hundreds of rockets were launched overnight by Palestinian terror groups, adding that the government could begin evacuating communities near the coastal enclave in preparation.
“We have more capabilities in our arsenal,” he threatened, speaking on condition of anonymity. “We are ready to continue attacking, attacking and attacking. Our strikes deeply affect Hamas, it would be better off returning to the understandings reached after Operation Protective Edge [in 2014].”
Authorities said over 150 rockets and mortar shells were launched at Israeli communities since Wednesday evening. The barrages by the Hamas terror group continued throughout the night and into Thursday, seriously injuring a woman when a projectile hit a home in the Eshkol regional council.
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According to IDF spokesperson Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, at least seven people in total were injured in southern Israel by the Gaza rocket attacks.
In response to the attacks, the Israeli army said it struck over 140 Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip overnight.
The military said its raids targeted training compounds as well as weapons manufacturing facilities and storage warehouses. The air force also targeted sites from which rockets were being launched, including a car that the army said was being used by a cell of terrorists. One Hamas operative was reportedly killed in the airstrike. Unconfirmed reports claimed he was the relative of a senior Hamas commander.