Rockets Fired Into Israel, Military Says 2 of Them Intercepted

The Israeli military said that four rockets were fired into Israel on Wednesday, with the country confirming that its Iron Dome System intercepted half of them.

The four rockets were fired from Gaza and two “rockets were intercepted mid-air by the Iron Dome Aerial Defense System,” the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) wrote in a statement.

The rocket attacks are the first since the United States, an ally of Israel, carried out airstrikes to kill top Iranian general Qassem Soleimani earlier this month. Hamas, a designated foreign terrorist organization, has close relations with Tehran, which officially endorses the creation of a Palestinian state.

Hamas, meanwhile, condemned the airstrike that killed Soleimani, who headed the shadowy Quds Force that backed a number of Iranian proxy militia groups in the region.

In November, Israel killed a senior leader of Islamic Jihad, which is a Hamas-aligned group in Gaza. The group then fired hundreds of rockets into Israel, of which many were intercepted by the Iron Dome anti-missile system, AFP reported. As a result, Israel struck dozens of targets inside Gaza.

In Wednesday’s rocket attack, the two remaining rockets not intercepted by the Iron Dome system fell into an open area, according to Haaretz and the Jerusalem Post.

Israel’s Magen David Adom ambulance service told the Post that no damage or injuries were reported. No group immediately claimed responsibility.

In December, a rocket was fired at the Israeli city of Ashkelon as it hosted a rally with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He was forced to seek shelter during the incident, but later returned to finish his speech.

The IDF then retaliated by striking targets in the Gaza Strip, hitting Hamas targets that included military compounds, Haaretz noted. Israeli aircraft earlier in December also bombed Hamas sites, including military camps and a naval base, the report also said.

On Tuesday, in nearby Syria, air defense systems were triggered on Tuesday following an aerial strike on a military base in Homs, state media said. According to the state-run SANA agency, “Army air defenses confronted aggression on T4 airport in Homs eastern countryside.”

It added there were “reports that say the aggression was perpetrated by drones and missiles” and “some of them were downed.” The state-run news outlet blamed Israel for the incident.

“The army air defenses immediately intercepted the hostile missiles and shot down a number of them, meanwhile, 4 missiles reached the targeted area and the damages were limited to materials,” a military source said via the state news outlet.

Syrian media has claimed that the T4 base has been targeted by the Israeli Air Force in the past.