Fatah Fires Retaliatory Rocket at Ashkelon

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- The al-Aksa Martyrs' Brigade, the military wing of the Palestinian Authority's Fatah faction, claimed credit for the M-75 Grad rocket fired at Israel's coastal city of Ashkelon Tuesday morning.

The rocket slammed into a road in the industrial area on the outskirts of the city but no one was hurt. The air siren failed to warn of the incoming rocket.

The group released a statement on the P.A.'s official Ma'an News Agency saying the attack was in retaliation for the death of Arafat Jaradat, an Arab who died of a heart attack Saturday in Israel's Megido Prison.

One Palestinian Authority official accused Israel of torturing Jaradat to death, demanding an international inquiry despite preliminary autopsy findings.

"Liberty will be achieved through sacrifice," the statement read. "We must fight the enemy with all means necessary. The resistance will continue."

Tuesday afternoon, Robert Serry, the U.N. special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, released a statement calling for "an independent and transparent investigation into the circumstances of Mr. Jaradat's death," to be "made public as soon as possible."

"The United Nations remains concerned about the deteriorating health of Palestinian detainees on hunger strike and reiterates that those held in administrative detention without charge should be charged and face trial with judicial guarantees in accordance with international standards, or promptly released," the statement continued.

Meanwhile, Arab residents of Hebron began the daily clashes with Israel Defense Forces soldiers in the area. The Arab assailants injured one Israeli with a rock.

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