Hamas fires dozens of rockets, Israel retaliates and shells Gaza

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Israeli air strikes targeted Gaza in response to Hamas rocket fire on the night of 8 to 9 August 2018. – MAHMUD HAMS / AFP

The Gaza sky has ignited. Israel retaliated with Hamas rocket fire, conducting night air raids against a dozen targets on Wednesday night. At least one Palestinian was killed, according to Israeli and Palestinian sources.

The Israeli army announced that the air force responded to rocket attacks by raiding 12 "terrorist sites" of the Palestinian Hamas movement. Videos filmed by witnesses show violent explosions.

70 rockets fired by Hamas

"About 70 rocket attacks from the Gaza Strip into Israeli territory have been registered for the moment," the Israeli army said in a statement. The majority of the rockets fell on uninhabited areas and 11 of them were intercepted by Israeli anti-missile systems, the army said.

But two rockets fell on the Israeli town of Sderot, police and the army said, where five people were slightly injured. The Israeli army has released this video of panic.

The UN called for calm and lamented Hamas rocket attacks in particular. "I am deeply alarmed by the escalation of violence between Gaza and Israel, particularly the many rockets fired today at localities in southern Israel," the UN special envoy said in a statement. Nickolay Mladenov. He called on all parties to avoid further escalation.

At war since 2008

Palestinian gunfire came after the death of two members of the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas, in an Israeli strike in the northern Gaza Strip. Hamas threatened to "pay the price" to Israel.

Wednesday's abrupt surge comes as Israel and Hamas indirectly discuss a possible truce, through Egypt and the UN. Hamas leaders have held meetings in Gaza in recent days, but no detail has filtered. Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since 2008.

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