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Israeli Forces Launch Retaliatory Airstrikes on Militant Targets in Gaza

The Israeli military has said it will continue to "use all means" available to protect the country from attempted attacks from Palestinian territory. A day earlier, the IDF said that three rockets targeting Israel were fired from Palestinian territories, as part of the recent increase in tensions between the Jewish state and Hamas.

Israeli jets carried out airstrikes on militant targets in the Gaza Strip early on Thursday, in response to the three rockets fired at Israel’s territory on Wednesday, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) said on Twitter.

​It was not immediately clear whether there were any casualties on the Palestinian side.

The IDF also said it will continue to "use all means to thwart attempts to attack the citizens of Israel" and to protect Israel’s sovereignty.

​On Wednesday, the Israeli military reported that it had registered three rockets launched from the Gaza Strip targeting the territory of Israel. No damage or victims have been reported.

READ MORE: Israel Attacks Militants' Posts in Gaza Strip in Response to Rocket Fire — IDF

More than 20 rockets have been fired from the Gaza Strip over the past month amid a fresh spike in tensions between Israel and Palestine, following US President Donald Trump’s move on December 6 to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state.

Palestinian demonstrators react to tear gas fired by Israeli troops during clashes at a protest as Palestinians call for a Day of Rage in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, near the border with Israel in the east of Gaza City, December 22, 2017 - Sputnik International
Over 100 Palestinians Injured in Clashes With Israeli Army in Gaza - Ministry
On January 2, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot  that Israel would continue taking all the necessary measures to ensure its security. However, according to him, the IDF would avoid using "maximum force" as a retaliatory measure, not allowing Israel to become mired in a renewed conflict in Gaza.

Israel blames Palestine’s Hamas movement for the rocket attacks. In turn, Hamas has claimed that the rocket shelling targeting Israel from Gaza is a matter of self-defense for Palestinians and that the move was provoked by the US decision on Jerusalem.

On December 12, Hamas announced the beginning of a third "intifada" uprising to protest the US recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

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