Israel bombarding Gaza after Hamas mortar attack

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Israel Defense Forces (IDF) are retaliating with air strikes, helicopters, and tank fire along the border of Gaza after a mortar attack by Hamas.

The initial attack reportedly lightly injured two people in an agricultural community. The military wing of Hamas, the Al-Qassam Brigades, claimed responsibility for the attack, breaking the undeclared cease-fire which has held since Israel's three-week invasion which ended in January 2009. Their attack, they said, was in response to the killing of two military members in an Israeli attack on a training camp on Thursday.

The attacks are reported to be targeting Hamas security installations, and Hamas officials have reported five injured, including three security officers and two civilians, one a three-year old boy.

The Gaza Strip, a narrow section of land on the Mediterranean coast that has land borders with Israel and Egypt, has been formally blockaded by Israeli forces since 2001, with all borders nearly completely sealed since 2007, shortly after the people of Gaza elected a Hamas government.