TEL AVIV—The Israeli army confirmed Thursday evening that two Fajr rockets were fired at Tel Aviv area from Gaza, as rocket alert sirens rocked the entire central Israel.
Despite the apparent activation of the Iron Dome air defence system, the military said no rockets were shot down.
“Two rockets were launched from the Gaza Strip towards Israeli territory. The alert and warning systems operated as required,” the IDF said. “No damage or injuries were reported. There are no special instructions for the civilian home front.”
This is the first time since Operation Protective Edge in 2014 that central Israel had been targeted by Gaza terrorists
Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai said he had ordered the city to open public air raid shelters as a protective measure. The decision was followed by several other municipalities in central Israel.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility in the Gaza Strip, where terrorist Hamas group has been engaged in talks with Egypt on a long-term ceasefire with Israel. In addition, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group—initially thought to be behind the attack—denied any involvement in the rocket fire.
The attacks came as Hamas sought to contain riots by Palestinians against the cost of living in the Strip. Security experts in Israel speculated that the domestic disturbances could lead the terror group to strike Israel as a diversion.
In a statement, World Jewish Congress CEO and Executive Vice President Robert Singer, said: “The World Jewish Congress and our affiliated communities in more than 100 countries stand with all Israelis tonight who are contending with another round of frightening missile fire emanating from Gaza.”
“We hold Hamas responsible for all attacks launched from the territory under its control, and urge the international community to publicly recognize that this offensive came unprovoked and that Israel has the full right to do whatever is required to safeguard the security of its residents and citizens,” Singer said.
“We will continue to monitor the situation closely and express our full solidarity with the people of Israel facing this savage attack against civilians on sovereign territory,” Singer said.