Palestinians open fire on the responding IDF unit, which answered with mortars into Gaza. No injuries reported.
By Paul Shindman, World Israel News
Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip opened fire Sunday on Israelis, prompting an IDF retaliation as Hamas threatened to ramp up attacks on Israel.
An Israeli work crew near the border fence reported gunfire Sunday morning around 10:00 a.m.. When an IDF force arrived to investigate, they were met by gunfire from Gaza in the area of Kibbutz Kisufim, Kan Radio reported.
The IDF responded with mortar fire. “There are no casualties in the incident and there is no change in the instructions to the residents,” the Eshkol Regional Council announced.
Hamas terrorists in Gaza have recently ramped up their balloon-bomb attacks on Israel with the IDF carrying out several retaliatory air raids on Hamas military targets last week in response to more than a dozen attacks from Gaza.
Terrorists allowed journalists to photograph them preparing incendiary and explosive charges and connecting them to balloons to be launched from Gaza. Predominantly offshore winds blow them into Israel, where they detonate.
In a related attack, the Iron Dome system intercepted a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip last week into Israeli territory, which at the time also prompted an IDF response against Hamas terrorist targets.
The rise in attacks coincides with the expiration next month of the monthly transfer of millions of dollars in cash payments provided to Gazans by Qatar.
Hamas and other terror groups said they will soon end their on-again, off-again ceasefire with Israel over the lack of progress in lowering the blockade against Gaza, the Lebanese newspaper Al Akhbar reported over the weekend.
Terrorist sources told Al Akhbar they would respond to any Israeli attack, hinting that tensions might escalate in the coming week.
For the past two years, Qatar has delivered tens of millions of dollars in cash every month, providing a lifeline for tens of thousands of impoverished families living under iron-fisted Hamas military rule.
Last November Qatar threatened to end the donations, prompting Hamas leaders at the time to issue a similar threat against Israel that “non-renewal means heading to an explosion in the face of the Israeli occupation, the first and last responsible for the siege.”