Israel hits Gaza with airstrikes, closes crossings after more rockets fired

Sunday, June 7, 2015
By Paul Martin

RT.com
June 07, 2015

Israeli jets struck several sites in northern Gaza on Sunday, as Israel blamed Hamas for launching a missile into Ashkelon and ordered all Gazan border crossings to be closed. The Palestinians say a pro-Islamic State group is trying to provoke a war.

The IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said the Air Force has hit a number of “terror infrastructure sites” in the northern Gaza Strip, the Jerusalem Post reports. This was in direct response to a rocket fired on Saturday from Gaza, which exploded outside of Israel’s southern Ashkelon region in an open space. There were no reports of injuries or damage.

It is the second time in days that Gaza has been bombed after obscure militants launched unguided missiles into Israel, with a similar scenario unfolding Thursday night. In both cases, the Omar Brigades, a radical Salafist group that has pledged allegiance to Islamic State (formerly ISIS/ISIL) claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Hamas, which is the dominant Palestinian group in Gaza, has claimed that the Salafists are trying to spark another major conflict in the region to seize power. Hamas has reportedly hunted down and killed a leader of the rival group, while a Twitter account thought to be run by the Omar Brigades said Sunday that the latest strike was “in protest” against the imprisonment of their fellow jihadists in Gaza.

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