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21 February 2024

Gaza rockets hit Israel, no casualties: army


Two rockets fired by militants in the Gaza Strip hit southern Israel on Tuesday evening but there were no reports of casualties, the Israeli army said.

Israeli media said that the two home-built Qassam rockets landed in open ground near a kibbutz in the Sdot Negev district, just east of the coastal strip.

Two weeks ago, Gaza’s main militant factions agreed to observe a period of calm after weeks of increased rocket fire and rising tensions along the border which prompted a warning from Arab leaders that there was a risk of a major new Israeli invasion.

Gaza’s Hamas rulers said they would ensure the “national consensus” truce was observed and deployed forces along the border zone.

Since then the border has mainly been quiet, although one rocket was fired on January 17 and the following day Israeli tanks staged a rare incursion into the northern Gaza Strip, killing one Palestinian and wounding two, medical officials said.

In the weeks before the latest truce, Gaza militants fired scores of rockets into the Jewish state, prompting a flurry of retaliatory air strikes and raising fears of another massive operation along the lines of the 2008-9 war.

The 22-day conflict, which ended in a ceasefire on January 18, 2009, killed 1,400 Palestinians, more than half of them civilians, and 13 Israelis, 10 of them soldiers.