Another Gaza rocket hits Israel, but truce persists

Thursday, June 26, 2008 |  Israel Today Staff

Palestinian terrorists operating out of the Gaza Strip fired a rocket into southern Israel on Thursday, again violating a fragile Egyptian-brokered ceasefire.

The rocket, the fifth to be fired by the Palestinians since the truce went into effect a week ago, landed in an open area and did not cause any damage or injuries.

Terrorists affiliated with US-backed Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah movement claimed credit for the attack, and threatened to continue firing rockets until Israel agreed to halt all anti-terror military operations against their forces in Judea and Samaria, areas that are not under the current ceasefire deal.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Defense Minister Ehud Barak were conspicuously silent in the face of the latest attack, while Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, Olmert's expected successor, told reporters during a meeting with her Norwegian counterpart that she insists on a military response to the rocket fire.

Said Livni: "I don't care who fired. Every breach must be met with an immediate military response. I made my opinion clear to both the prime minister and the defense minister following the first infraction, and I will make clear to my foreign counterparts too."

Gaza terrorists first violated the ceasefire on Tuesday, when four rockets and a mortar shell hit southern Israel, wounding two Israelis. Olmert and Barak responded by temporarily closing the Gaza border crossings. It was later revealed by a Kuwaiti newspaper that Olmert and Barak had agreed to not respond militarily unless the offending Palestinian party was Hamas.

In other violence, Palestinian stone throwers attacked an Israeli motorist north of Jerusalem on Thursday, causing damage to the vehicle but no injuries.

A day earlier, an American tourist was attacked and lightly wounded by Palestinian Arabs after accidentally driving into the Palestinian-controlled Samarian town of Kalandia, also just north of Jerusalem. The man was rescued from an Arab lynch mob by Palestinian Authority police, who turned him over to Israeli security forces.

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