Israel Brief August 26, 2011: Second Ceasefire Broken, Rocket Lands in Israel



Second Ceasefire Broken, Rocket Lands in Israel

Source: Virtual Jerusalem, 8-26-11

A Grad rocket fired from Gaza landed in open land south of Ashkelon on Friday.gaza rocketf alls in ashkelon

Air raid sirens were heard before the rocket hit. No physical injuries or property damage were reported in the attack.

The attack came after the Islamic Jihad announced a new cease-fire agreement in Gaza early Friday morning. The agreement was reportedly brokered by Egypt and the UN.

The cease-fire announcement, made by Nafaz Azam, was unexpected as on Thursday Islamic Jihad had vowed to extend the range of their rocket capabilities, sending projectiles deeper into Israel. The terror group had said that it would triple the number of Israelis affected by rocket attacks.

At least 17 rockets and mortar shells pounded Israel on Thursday evening, just one day after Wednesday’s barrage of at least 21 such projectiles. On Wednesday a 9-month old baby girl was wounded by shrapnel from a rocket.

Most of the projectiles hit hit open areas near Ashkelon and in the Sha’ar Hanegev Regional Council. A mortar shell struck the Erez crossing, which is frequently used by Gaza residents seeking to enter Israel for medical treatments, causing extensive damage.

Shortly after that attack the IAF reported a precise hit on a second terror cell seeking to launch a rocket in the area. Gaza sources said two Islamic Jihad terrorists were killed in the airstrike.

The immediate breaking of Thursday morning’s Islamic Jihad ceasefire is no surprise in light of the mass of rockets that struck Israel immediately following the Hamas-led ceasefire announced on Sunday.


Israel Brief August 26, 2011: Gaza Terror Groups Announce New Ceasefire on Israel Rocket Attacks



Gaza Terror Groups Announce New Ceasefire

Source: Virtual Jerusalem, 8-26-11

Hamas, the Islamic Jihad and the other terror groups in the Gaza Strip declared another ceasefire with Israel late Thursday night, Voice of Israel Radio reported.

According to the report, rocket attacks aimed at southern Israel’s communities will stop at 1:00 p.m. Israel time on Friday.

The announcement came after at least 17 rockets and mortar shells were fired from Gaza on Thursday evening. The rockets and mortars exploded in open fields in Eshkol, the Sha’ar HaNegev Regional Council, and south of Ashkelon. The “Color Red” warning siren was sounded in the areas under attack.

Shortly after 7:00 p.m. another rocket was fired that struck near the Erez crossing. The IAF reported that warplanes struck a separate terror cell preparing a launch just before the Erez attack and scored a “precise hit.”

After 10:00 p.m., terrorists in northern Gaza fired yet another rocket at the western Negev city of Sderot. The rocket hit an agricultural facility east of the city.

Thankfully, there were no physical injuries in any of Thursday’s attacks, which came after at least 20 rockets were fired into Israel Wednesday night.

According to Voice of Israel Radio, the announcement of the latest ceasefire was surprising since only several hours before the announcement, the Islamic Jihad terror group criticized Hamas for suggesting that it stop firing rockets.

A spokesman for the Islamic Jihad had been quoted as saying that “whoever calls for a lull while Israeli aggression, including aerial strikes and bombardments of civil and military targets continues – must be living on a different planet.”

The latest ceasefire, however, may not mean much, as the terror groups have declared ceasefires in the past and almost immediately violated them. In fact, the latest round of violence came after Hamas declared a ceasefire on Sunday evening.

The Islamic Jihad used the fact that Israel killed one of its terrorists, who had been planning a terror attack in Gaza, as an excuse to launch a barrage of rockets at southern Israel.


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