Follow here for The Algemeiner’s continued live updates on the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas. Our report on the launch of Israel’s Operation Defensive Edge can be found here. For a report on Israel’s targeting of a top Hamas commander on Tuesday click here. For details on the rocket attacks that led to Israel’s operation click here. To read yesterday’s live blog (now closed) click here. For more information please check our homepage.
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8:55 am – “At least two rockets fell in open areas north of Zikhron Ya’akov, just 37 km south of Haifa, in what was the longest reaching rocket attack since Operation Protective Edge began late Monday,” Israel’s Ynet News reported.
Zikhron Ya’akov is 120 km north of Gaza.
8:44 am – Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon announced that Israel’s campaign against Hamas will expand in the next few days.
“We are continuing to carry out attacks that are exacting a heavy price from Hamas,” Ya’alon said. “We are destroying [Hamas’] arms, terrorist infrastructure, command and control systems, institutions, government buildings, terrorists’ homes, and we are killing terrorists in the organizational high command.”
8:41 am – Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu sounded a defiant tone on Wednesday.”The IDF is prepared for any eventuality,” he said. “Hamas will pay a heavy price for it’s firing at Israeli citizens. The army is strong, the homefront is fortified, and the people are united.”
“That combination is our response to the terrorist groups who want to hurt us.”
8:34 am – The IDF published details of its missions in Gaza last night:
Overnight, as part of the ongoing operation “Protective Edge”, the IDF targeted approximately 160 terror sites throughout the Gaza Strip.
Among the terror targets the IDF struck are: 118 concealed rocket launching sites, consisting of long-range rockets launchers; weapon storage facilities; 10 tunnels, out of which 7 terror tunnels and 3 smuggling tunnels; 6 Hamas official facilities, and 10 terror command positions.
Since operation “Protective Edge” embarked on July 7, the IDF has targeted approximately 440 targets, with both Naval and Aerial capabilities.
Over the course of the night, a joint IDF-ISA operation led to the successful IAF targeting of Hafez Hamid, 77′, a commander in the Islamic Jihad. Hamid was responsible for the recent rocket attacks against Sderot.
Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, IDF Spokesman: “Overnight, terror organizations in the Gaza Strip suffered a severe blow, as the numerous IDF strikes in Gaza managed to significantly impair terrorist capabilities and prevent possible schemes against Israelis. The targets have been selected specifically following long-term intelligence efforts indicating a direct link between them and terrorist infrastructure. ”
Yesterday evening, terrorist organizations operating in Gaza launched a salvo of 45 rockets at major Israeli cities, reaching as far as Hadera, located 116 km from Gaza. The rocket that hit Hadera is an M-302 type rocket, similar to the ones found onboard the Klos-c, a vessel on which was an Iranian shipment of advanced weaponry intended for terrorist organizations operating in the Gaza Strip the IDF intercepted on March 5. Onboard the …read more
Source: The Algemeiner