The sky over Gaza was lit by explosions on Friday night as Palestinian militants fired dozens of rockets into Israel in a show of vengeance for the Israeli airstrikes, carried out as part of Operation Breaking Dawn, which killed at least 10 people, including Tayseer al-Jabari, a senior commander of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement, earlier on the same day.
Sirens were heard in southern and central areas, while images broadcast by Israeli television stations appeared to show a flurry of missiles being shot down by air defence systems. No reports of sirens came from Tel Aviv, Israel's economic centre, where witnesses only said they could hear booms.
Islamic Jihad, a fundamentalist militant group in charge of Gaza and the main contender to Hamas, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it had fired more than 100 rockets on Friday into Israeli cities, including Tel Aviv. As reported by Al-Arabiya, 40 missiles out of 100 were shot down by Israel’s Iron Dome air defence system.
The Times of Israel referred to initial reports saying several rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome air defence system.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) struck a Palestinian Islamic Jihad rocket launching position in the Gaza Strip, the Times of Israel wrote. The site, according to IDF, was used to launch at least 10 rockets at Israel earlier tonight.
The Israeli ambulance service said there were no reports of casualties. For its part, the Magen David Adom ambulance service said it had treated four people who were sustained light injuries after falling down while darting for bomb shelters amid Islamic Jihad rocket attacks. One person was treated for anxiety. The individuals were taken to the Barzilai hospital in Ashkelon and the Assuta hospital in Ashdod.
The development comes more than a year after an 11-day clash between Israel and Hamas in May 2021, which lead to the death of at least 250 people in Gaza and 13 in Israel leaving the Palestinian economy shattered.