Since the June 12, 2014 kidnapping of three teenagers, southern Israel has been the target of ever-increasing rocket and other terrorist attacks from the Gaza Strip, aimed deliberately at civilian targets. Over these 21 days (June 12 - July 3), approximately 130 rockets were fired.
Update: Over 25 rockets fired from the Gaza Strip rained down on southern Israel Sunday (July 6), striking in the Hof Ashkelon Regional Council, the Sha'ar Hanegev Regional Council, and Sderot. This followed the rocket attacks on Saturday, two of which were fired at Beersheba. At least 29 other rockets and mortars fired from the Gaza Strip at Israel over the weekend. On July 7, a Grad rocket exploded near Beersheba and an anti-tank RPG missile was fired at an IDF force on operational duty along the Gaza border fence near Kibbutz Re'im.
Monday, 30 June saw a sharp escalation, with the intensification in attacks beginning in the morning, prior to the discovery of the boys' bodies. That day, Hamas itself fired rockets. In the past four days alone, 80 rockets were launched from Gaza (as of 3 July, 15:00 Israel time). Additionally, there were five barrages of mortar shells.
These rockets have injured Israelis, damaged cars, homes and property. On Thursday morning (3 July) a rocket hit a nursery school and rockets burned two factories in Sderot to the ground (28 June).
In addition to the rocket attacks, Palestinians have carried out cross-border attacks from Gaza. A terrorist armed with a grenade infiltrated an Israeli village (22 June) and Israeli forces were attacked on 28 and 29 June.
Hamas controls the Gaza Strip since 2007 and bears responsibility for the rocket attacks.
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