Quiet in southern Israel and Gaza as Hamas ceasefire holds

ISRAEL UNLEASHED: Jerusalem BLASTS TARGETS in Gaza After 'Shooting Incident'

Israel Launches ‘Wide-Scale Attack’ Against Hamas Targets in Gaza

An IDF soldier was killed by sniper fire from Gaza late Friday afternoon (Israel time), the IDF cleared for publication.

Israel targeted Hamas positions in Gaza, killing four Palestinians on Friday in a series of air strikes after gunmen shot at soldiers near the border, officials said.

Israel and Hamas have fought three such wars over the past decade and Hamas agreed to the second such cease-fire in a week under heavy Egyptian and worldwide pressure.

Israel and Hamas have agreed to restore calm in the Gaza Strip, a spokesman for Hamas, the Islamist group that controls the Gaza Strip, said on Saturday.

It said "fighter jets commenced a wide-scale attack against Hamas military targets throughout the Gaza Strip".

Palestinians have been protesting every Friday since March 30, demanding their right to return to the homes and land their families were expelled from 70 years ago. No Israelis have been killed. Most were shot during demonstrations and clashes along the border, but others were killed in air strikes or by tank fire.

Manelis said that Hamas had spent the past three and a half months carrying out acts of terrorism during mass demonstrations at the border, firing rockets and mortar shells into Israel, and launching arson kites and balloons.

Conricus said that he did not have details of which Palestinian faction carried out the shooting attack but that Israel holds Hamas responsible for all attacks from Gaza.

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Recent weeks have also seen a sharp increase in arson attacks in Israel from balloons and kites launched from Gaza.

Last weekend saw the most severe exchange of fire between Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza since the 2014 war.

"At the end of an assessment by the southern command this morning it was chose to maintain a full civilian routine in the communities close to the Gaza Strip", Haaretz quoted the statement as saying.

Friday's violence comes after almost four months of protests by Palestinians along the fence with Israel.

According to the Israeli media, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrived at army headquarters in Tel Aviv to review the situation in Gaza.

"The event that happened today is something that we can not tolerate and can not allow to become a routine norm, that's why we retaliated and that's why we continue to target military targets belonging to Hamas", Israeli military spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Conricus said. The Israeli army said three projectiles had been fired into Israel by Palestinian militants.

Israel has also further tightened its blockade of Gaza by restricting use of the only goods crossing, suspending oil and gas deliveries.

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