14:38 GMT20 September 2020
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    Overnight, tensions on the Gaza-Israel border flared up with rockets from the self-governing Palestinian territory hitting the southern Israeli city of Beersheba. The IDF responded to the attack with air raids against targets in the Gaza Strip and restricted fishing areas and closed all the checkpoints along the joint border.

    The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have announced they thwarted an attack by a "terrorist squad" from the Gaza Strip on the Hof Ashkelon Regional Council hours after a similar attack of the southern Israeli city of Beersheba. The military explained in a tweet that the prevented launch had nonetheless triggered sirens in the country's south, indicating possible new shelling from the Gaza Strip. 

    This comes as Israel has moved to shut down all checkpoints on the border with the region and restricted areas for Gazan fishermen in response to rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

    The Israel Air Force has attacked 20 "military targets" in the Gaza Strip in response to Palestinian rocket shelling, according to Army spokesman Jonathan Conricus.

    "These are mid-range locally produced rockets that are in possession of only two organizations in Gaza… It is Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad which very much narrows it down to who is behind it… From our point of view, Hamas bears full responsibility for this attack. Hamas is creating a breeding environment for terror and violence," the spokesman stated.

    Overnight, Israeli fighter jets began attacking targets in the Gaza Strip in response to rocket fire from the territory. 

    The Israeli army registered a rocket launch from the Gaza Strip that resulted in a siren in the city of Beersheba going off. Israeli police said that the rocket had damaged a residential house in the city.

    READ MORE: Israeli Army Says Destroyed Palestinian Tunnel on Gaza Border

    "In response to the rockets fired from #Gaza at #Israel overnight, IDF fighter jets have started attacking terror targets in Gaza," the IDF wrote on its Twitter page.

    There are no reports of any Palestinians having been killed by the Israeli airstrikes.

    Earlier this week, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that only "a serious blow" to Hamas would put an end to violence on the Gaza border.

    Tensions between the Israelis and the Palestinians near the Gaza border have been mounting since late March. The disturbances on the Israeli-Gaza border have been caused by continued shelling and the launch of arson balloons by Hamas militants into Israeli territories.


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