Residents continue to flee Sderot amid rocket storm

Thursday, May 17, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

The exodus of Israelis from the southern town of Sderot continued apace Thursday morning, as more rockets fired from the Palestinian-controlled Gaza slammed into the battered community.

Some 4,000 Sderot residents were evacuated on Wednesday in separate efforts by Israel's Defense Ministry and Russian-Israeli billionaire Arcadi Gaydamak.

Later, the Defense Ministry set up a hotline for any Sderot resident interested in being evacuated to call and receive assistance.

Palestinian terrorists have hit Sderot and surrounding communities with more than 50 rockets over the past three days. At least three people have suffered physical injuries, including a 70-year-old woman that was seriously wounded when her house sustained a direct hit, and another 20 have been treated for shock.

In Thursday morning's attacks, a high school not far from Sderot was hit, as was a greenhouse complex in the area.

As the attacks continued into the afternoon, some Israeli media reported that the government had finally authorized the army to send tanks into Gaza. Israeli army officials speaking to Israel National News later denied those reports, stating that the tanks were all still parked outside Gaza.

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