UPDATE 9:15 pm Israel time Tuesday:
This will be the final update of today unless events intervene.
As of this moment, 40 rockets are confirmed to have been fired by Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists in Gaza at the residents of southern Israel in the last 24 hours (30 Qassams and 10 Grads). Most recently–9:06 pm: Incoming rocket alert for Netivot. 9:05 pm: Qassam rocket strikes Sha’ar Hanagev. 8:42 pm: 3 Qassams strike Netivot area. 8:36 pm: Incoming rockets for Nahal Oz.
It has also been confirmed that the two terrorists who were killed in the attack on the Egypt-Israel fence yesterday in which an Israeli Arab contractor was killed were Saudi Arabian and Egyptian.
UPDATE 6:45 pm Israel time Tuesday:
6 more Qassam rockets have struck southern Israel since 4 pm this afternoon: 5 in the Sha’ar Hanegev region and 1 in the Chof Ashkelon region. No further info.
UPDATE 4:00 pm Israel time Tuesday:
In the last two hours, the situation has degraded even more with 10 Qassam rockets striking the Eshkol region of southern Israel–precise locations have not been released. Reports are of flash fires and near misses of Israeli men, women, and children–including a Qassam that struck near a unit of police sappers.
UPDATE 10:00 am Israel time Tuesday:
Galei Zahal, Army Radio, is reporting that an unspecified number of rockets were fired at Eilat last night. No further info.
UPDATE 8:45 am Israel time Tuesday:
IMPORTANT ALERT! The IDF has issued an alert for all southern Israelis living in the Eshkol region to stay within 15 seconds of a fortified structure.
UPDATE 7:05 am Israel time Tuesday:
At 7:04 am, the Hamas terrorist military wing claimed responsibility for firing 4 Qassam rockets at southern Israel this morning. At 5:34 am, there was another incoming rocket alert for Ashkelon.
UPDATE 5:22 am Israel time Tuesday:
In the hour and a half since the last update: at 4:26 am, incoming rocket alert for Chof Ashkelon region; at 4:30 am, incoming rocket alert for Ashkelon; at 4:36 am, Hamas in Gaza announced an “escalation” of the fighting; at 5:02 am–twenty minutes ago–more incoming rocket alerts for Ashkelon and Ashkelon Chof region.
UPDATE 4:05 am Israel time Tuesday and TODAY’S BLOG:
Due to the increase in fighting along the Israeli border with Gaza–which saw IDF tanks moved to “forward positions” late Monday afternoon–today’s blog will be a continual updating of what is happening today.
Regular readers of this blog will recall that on Sunday, Palestinian terrorists launched a significant mortar attack into southern Israel targeting an IDF force patrolling the border. This was followed Sunday night by at least 5 Qassams fired by terrorists in Gaza at Israeli citizens living in the area from south of Ashkelon to Sderot.
Then, yesterday morning (Monday), an Israeli civilian contractor was killed by a three-man terrorist squad along the fence being built between the northern Sinai/Gaza and Israel; elements of the IDF’s Golani Brigade subsequently killed two of those terrorists ( the 3rd terrorist escaped and is currently being sought by the Egyptian army).
Yesterday afternoon, another Qassam was fired at the Chof Ashkelon region.
Palestinian terrorist activity continued last night. At 9:28 pm, incoming rocket sirens sent Israeli men, women, and children running to their bomb shelters in Ashkelon, Sderot, and in the Chof Ashkelon region. At 9:31 pm missile explosions were heard in the northern Negev area. At 9:35 pm, more sirens sounded in Sderot.
At around the same time, we also heard explosions south of our position here in Ashdod (in the area between south Ashdod and Ashkelon).
At 12:28 am, the IAF struck Gaza and again at 2:26 am. Four Islamic Jihad terrorists have been reported killed–two as they were preparing to fire more rockets at southern Israel and two more who were attempting to plant IEDs along the Gaza border fence.
At 4:03 am–one hour ago–, incoming rocket sirens sounded in the Chof Ashkelon region.
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