The latest barrage of strikes in the region began after Israeli officials revealed that a Palestinian prisoner in their custody who had been on a hunger strike for nearly 90 days had died.
Israeli and Palestinian forces exchanged heavy rocket fire into early Wednesday, marking the latest spike in boiling tensions between the two groups.
The Israel Defense Force initially confirmed earlier Tuesday that Israeli military personnel was conducting airstrikes across the Gaza Strip in response to overnight launches from the region.
A statement issued Wednesday by the IDF states that Israeli jets fired on various targets, including a Hamas training camp, military outpost and compounds, munitions sites and an underground tunnel, among other locations.
The terrorist organization Hamas bears responsibility for what is happening in the Gaza Strip and is the one who will pay the price for the security violations against the State of Israel, the release concludes.
A stream of unconfirmed cellphone footage from the ground surfaced online earlier shortly after news of the first rounds of fire broke out.
Injuries have been reported, although specifics have not been released. Sirens have sounded in places including but not limited to Sderot, southern Ashkelon, Netiv HaAssara, Nir Am.
A truce had been established between both parties for nearly two hours before reports of rocket exchanges began to surface once again.
The IDF earlier detailed that approximately 21 rockets had been launched from the Gaza Strip toward Israel after news broke of the death of Khader Adnan, a Palestinian prisoner who had been on a hunger strike for nearly three months. Reports note he was found unconscious in his cell.
At the time, Mohammad Shtayyeh, who serves as the Palestinian prime minister, described Adnan’s death as a deliberate assassination as Israel had repeatedly rejected his release requests.
In the immediate moments after Adnan’s death, three rockets had been launched from the Gaza Strip; however, IDF officials detailed at the time that the projectiles had caused no damages as they landed in open areas.
Responses were later kicked up after retaliatory tank fire by Israeli officials.
Sputnik / ABC Flash Point Middle East News 2023.