22:06 GMT01 April 2020
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    "Hundreds" of rockets were seen being fired from Gaza into southern Israel late Wednesday, just 30 minutes after air raid sirens were triggered by officials.

    The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) shared footage of the ongoing deployments, writing in a tweet that "the skies of southern Israel ... [are filled with] hundreds of rockets being fired by Islamic Jihad from Gaza at Israeli homes."

    ​The Times of Israel reported that sirens initially sounded off in Ashdod and in "several areas in the city," and that several rockets were reportedly intercepted by the state's Iron Dome Missile Defense system. Additionally, rocket fragments from an intercepted projectile landed in the streets of Ashdod, but they did not cause any injuries or structural damages.

    ​Air raid sirens have been sounding off across Israel for several days since the IDF revealed that it had killed Baha Abu al-Ata, the commander of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group, during an airstrike. The announcement was followed by a barrage of rockets being fired from Gaza toward Israel, a move which saw Israeli officials retaliate by launching their own rockets toward the area.

    During a press conference regarding the commander's death, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that Ata "was a ticking bomb," and that the militant individual was "in the midst of planning additional attacks in the immediate short term."

    Since the exchange of fire began, at least 24 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza amid the IDF's continuing operation, with dozens more injured. The IDF has previously indicated that more than 300 rockets have been launched from Gaza, noting that 90% of the projectiles have been successfully intercepted.


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    Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Iron Dome anti-missile system, rocket, Gaza, Israel
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