Palestinian Children Killed by Errant Hamas Rocket, IDF Says

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

Three Palestinian children were killed by an errant rocket launched from Gaza on Tuesday, the Israeli military said, countering a claim by the Hamas-run Health Ministry they died in an Israeli airstrike.

Hamas claimed the children, including a ten-year-old girl, were killed in an Israeli air raid in Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip. However, the IDF said the minors were killed by a rocket that misfired within the Strip.

The Israeli military struck more than 130 Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorist sites throughout the Gaza Strip, in an operation dubbed “Guardians of the Wall.”

Gaza media identified many of the IDF’s targets as sites belonging to terror groups such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The IDF has in the past described Beit Hanoun as residential areas that have been turned into “terrorist fortresses” by Hamas.

The news came as more than 400 rockets were fired at Israel over 24 hours, wounding more than 80 people and killing two. Homes in the southern of Israeli city of Ashkelon sustained direct hits, killing two Israeli women and wounding several others.

The Hamas terror group boasted it had fired 137 rockets at Israel in the space of five minutes, and warned it had “many more surprises” in store.

Shortly after the attack which killed the two women, the Israel Defense Forces issued a statement saying it had killed two top Islamic Jihad commander who oversaw the terror group’s rocket arsenal.

“The IDF will continue to act resolutely to restore security to the residents of the south, and all commanders must prepare for the expansion of the campaign, with no time limit,” the IDF said in a statement.

It is not the first time errant Palestinian rockets claimed the lives of Palestinians. During the 2014 50-day summer conflict between Gaza and Israel, several rockets fell short of their target and killed Palestinians.

One example occurred in 2013, when a Palestinian journalist for the BBC, Jihad Masharawi, made headlines around the world for a heartbreaking photo which featured the journalist carrying the dead body of his 11-month-old son, who had allegedly been killed in an Israeli airstrike.

The U.N. later released a report saying the baby had actually been killed by a Palestinian rocket that had misfired.

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