Israel: Violence Flares on Multiple Fronts

Israel: Violence Flares on Multiple Fronts

Gaza Palestinians on Monday fired an anti-tank missile, rockets and bursts of gunfire at Israel Defense Forces troops patrolling along the border with the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, reports The Times of Israel. One soldier was wounded by shrapnel from a Gaza rocket fired at southern Israel. 

Nine members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad were killed overnight, according to Palestinian sources, when Israeli jets struck 14 sites in Gaza Strip, after a day of near-constant rocket fire from Gaza on Israeli towns near the Palestinian enclave.

According to Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz, Seven of the Hamas members killed overnight died in a tunnel collapse, and it is still unclear whether the collapse was the deliberate result of an Israeli attack. Two weeks ago Hamas also lost five members after a mysterious explosion in a Gaza tunnel, but did not respond with rocket fire. 

In Israel and the West Bank, clashes between Palestinians and Israeli police continued for a fifth straight day, after police confirmed that six Jewish suspects had been arrested in connection with the apparent revenge killing of Arab teen Muhammed Abu Khdeir, 16, last week. Police believe his killing was in revenge for the Hamas-connected abduction and murder of three Israeli teens whose bodies were found last week. Arab protesters burned tires and threw stones and firebombs at police in several East Jerusalem neighborhoods.

Rioting, rock-throwing and tire-burning were also reported in several northern and southern Arab towns. Arab Israeli politicians and community leaders have met to call for calm in Arab areas, though those calls have so far been largely ignored.

Palestinians tried to burn Joseph’s Tomb in the West Bank city of Nablus Sunday night, PA sources said. Security forces using tear gas prevented the rioters from the reaching the site, sacred to Jews, Christians, Samaritans, and Muslims.

Meanwhile, on Israel’s northern border, the IDF responded early Monday morning to a mortar shell launched from Syria that hit the Golan Heights, firing at suspicious positions on the Syrian side of the border.  There were no reports of injuries.