Palestinians Fire More Rockets from Gaza

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JERUSALEM, Israel - Palestinians in the Gaza Strip targeted two southern Israeli cities with longer-range Grad-type rockets on Monday night.

Wedding guests celebrating in a residential neighborhood in the town of Netivot, nine miles east of Gaza, ran for cover as the explosion drowned out the music.

"There was music, then we suddenly heard a loud blast," one of the guests said. "Everyone - little children and men - ran for cover. People fell over one another. It's a miracle no one was hurt," she said.

The rocket damaged a parked car and the paved road, and four people were treated for shock.

Moments later, another Grad exploded in a open area in the community of Ofakim, about 15 miles from the Gaza Strip.

"It was terrifying. We heard a boom [that sounded like] a nuclear bomb. We thought it was thunder. There was smoke and explosions," one resident said.

Another resident said she was making a cup of coffee when the explosion cracked the kitchen window.

"I'm traumatized and afraid of sleeping. We are at God's mercies. I don't even have a protected space here," she said, adding that the IDF needed to "reenter Gaza and launch another operation."

In a separate attack, a mortar shell exploded in an open area in the Eshkol Regional Council, with no property damage or personal injuries.

Despite talk to the contrary by Hamas, the Palestinian faction controlling the Gaza Strip, rocket attacks have been on the increase again two years after Operation Cast Lead substantially reduced the attacks.

Over a two-day period in January, Palestinians fired more than 13 rockets. In the same month, a teenage girl was injured when a rocket exploded near a kindergarten in the coastal city of Ashkelon, about 12 miles north of Gaza.


YNet news contributed to the report. 

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