January 22, 2020
Israel Responds with Air Strikes after Militants Fired Hundreds of Rockets
About 600 rockets towards Israel are said to have been fired by militants. This prompted Israel to retaliate according to the country’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. According to a statement that he made last week is that the Israeli authorities will continue to retaliate and by Sunday, May 5 is that about 260 targets in Gaza had been hit with air strikes.
IDF Conducts Air Strikes
According to a statement by IDF is that they responded to the rockets with air strikes to more than 260 targets. They were targeting the Palestinian Islamic Jihad and Hamas who are responsible for mass loss of lives and destructions. Some of the main sites used by militants that were hit include a mosque-based in al-Shati and a rocket launcher site. Hamida Ahmed Abdul Khudri, a 34-year-old man suspected to have helped fund the militants was targeted and killed.
Several people including kids, civilians and militants have been killed. In Ashkelon, a 58-year-old man was killed while in Gaza, a pregnant woman with her one-year-old was killed. Hamid Ahmed Abdul Khudri, a 34-year-old said to have played a role in funding militants in Gaza was targeted and killed by the defense forces. A total of 23 Palestinian men and three Israelis were killed during the strikes.
What Led to the Violence?
Although Hamas was blamed for instigating the violence since it rules Gaza, Israeli military released a statement saying this was not the case. The Iranian-backed Islamic Jihad, on the other hand, is said to have instigated the violence. This is after two Israeli soldiers were shot and wounded by the Jihad militants along the border.
UN Efforts to Restore Peace
UN is concerned about the escalating violence in the region as this has led to the extreme suffering of the people. Speaking about the ceasefire efforts, Nickolay Mladenov, The Middle East Peace Process UN Special coordinator called on everyone involved to de-escalate. He confirmed that there are renewed efforts to restore peace.
Border Crossings Closed
In regards to the same, two border crossings between Gaza which are occupied by about 2 million people and Israel together with the fishing zone were closed by the Israeli authorities. They did not clearly say the date that they would reopen these areas. It is to control the movement between the two areas.