Rockets Fired at Northern Israel

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CBNNews.com - NAHARIYA, Israel - Lebanese-based terrorists fired at least three Katyusha rockets on the northern coastal town of Nahariya at 8:00 a.m.Thursday morning, one scoring a direct hit on a nursing home.

Two residents, who sustained shrapnel wounds to their legs, were evacuated for treatment, and several others were treated for shock.

Because residents were in the dining room awaiting breakfast, no one was seriously injured, though the building was heavily damaged.

"The fact that all the seniors were there [in the dining room] saved many lives because the strike caused heavy damage to the rooms on the second floor [where bedrooms are located]," nursing home manager Henry Carmeli told the Israeli daily Haaretz.

Magen David Adom -- Israel's national emergency rescue service -- was put on high alert.

The IDF (Israel Defense Forces) responded by firing five mortar shells at the launch site, Hezbollah's al-Manar television reported.

The IDF confirmed "a pinpoint response at the source of fire."

The Home Front Command ordered Nahariya residents to stay indoors, within easy access of their bomb shelters. School was canceled.

IDF troops deployed along the northern border have been on high alert since the start of Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip nearly two weeks ago.

On Wednesday evening, Hezbollah spiritual leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah issued more threats against the Jewish state.

"The Zionists will discover that the [Second Lebanon] war they had in July [2006] was a walk in the park compared to what we have in store for them now," Nasrallah said

"I say to [Israeli Prime Minister Ehud] Olmert, the failed leader who was defeated in Lebanon, you can never beat Hamas and Hezbollah," the terror chief said.

Meanwhile, the Lebanese government condemned the attack as a violation of UN Resolution 1701.

"Prime Minister Siniora regards what happened in the south as a violation of the international resolution 1701 and something he does not accept, and Siniora called for an investigation into the incident," a statement read.

Because older, outdated Katyushas were used in Thursday's attack, a pro-Palestinian Lebanese group may have fired the rockets, but the IDF knows nothing happens without Hezbollah's okay.

"Nothing happens in Lebanon without a green light from Hezbollah," one defense official said.

"Even it was a Palestinian group that fired the rockets, Hezbollah would have to at least have turned a blind eye to allow the rocket fire," he said.

On December 25, the Lebanese Army and UNIFIL (United Nations forces) discovered eight Katyusha rockets, fitted with timers, aimed at Israel.

The missiles were diffused "a short while before the time set for their launching," Lebanon's Naharnet news agency reported.

Sources: YNet news, The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz

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Tzippe Barrow

Tzippe Barrow

CBN News Jerusalem Bureau

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