Eight people were killed and at least 40 others were injured in yesterday’s multi-pronged terror attack that targeted Israeli civilians. In a premeditated attack, terrorists targeted Israeli civilians, who were on their way to Eilat, a popular tourist destination for summer vacations. All of the incidents took place near the Israel-Egypt border. According to Israeli intelligence, the terrorists originated from Gaza.
Since Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005, terrorists have fired more than 7,000 rockets and mortars into Israel. Turning Gaza into a launching pad for terrorist activity, Hamas continues to target major Israeli population centers. Millions of Israel’s southern residents live under a daily threat of rocket and terror attacks. The Hamas terrorist organization has also increased its attacks on Israeli soldiers along the Israel-Gaza border, firing advanced anti-tank weapons at IDF tanks.
In July and August, terrorists operating in the Gaza Strip launched approximately 50 rockets and five grad rockets into Israel. The year 2011 saw an increase in rocket attacks—more than 350 rockets and mortars fired from Gaza hit dozens of Israeli southern communities.
On August 1, a middle-aged Israeli woman was moderately injured in a rocket attack emanating from Gaza; the rocket landed in the outskirts of Ashkelon–a city populated by 112,000 residents.
Last April, Hamas launched an antitank missile from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel, striking a school bus, killing 16-year-old Daniel Viflic and wounding the bus driver.
Israel resorts to Iron Dome following barrage of short-range rockets and mortar shells
Overnight, the Iron Dome, an Israeli missile-defense system, intercepted four rockets launched from Gaza into Israel.
The Iron Dome system was designed as a response to the threats Israel faces from short-range rockets and mortar shells. The system has the capability to identify and destroy such projectiles before they land in Israeli territory. It has the capability to determine where an incoming projectile will land and only intercepts projectiles that pose meaningful threats.