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26 Jan, 2020 18:07

Israel strikes Gaza in response to rocket fire & balloon launches

Israel strikes Gaza in response to rocket fire & balloon launches

Israeli forces are striking Hamas targets in Gaza for a second day, responding to projectile launches from there. It comes as PM Benjamin Netanyahu is touting the peace “deal of the century," already rejected by the Palestinians.

Israeli military struck a “Hamas military post” on Sunday, stating that the attack came in response to “rocket and explosive balloons” launches from the Palestinian enclave. Earlier in the day, Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that a single rocket was fired from the Strip into Israel.

Air strikes under the same pretext were also carried out by the IDF on Saturday, when its aircraft targeted a “weapons production site and a military compound,” belonging to the Hamas militant group. Over the past few weeks, Israeli media repeatedly reported rockets, as well as explosive and incendiary balloons, being launched from Gaza.

The increase in military activities in Gaza comes as Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu and his political arch-rival Benny Gantz are about to meet US President Donald Trump, who is set to finally unveil his 'deal of the century' "peace plan" for Israel and Palestine. The plan has been overwhelmingly rejected in advance by the Palestinians – as well as by other Arab nations – and no Palestinian representative was invited to the upcoming event in order to, apparently, avoid spoiling it.

Also on rt.com Israeli Air Force strikes multiple targets in Gaza in response to ‘explosive balloons’

Both Netanyahu and Gantz – who are now heading into the country's third general election, having failed to form a government after two inconclusive votes – did their best to praise Trump's deal and thank him for his friendship and his invitation to the event.

Netanyahu said that an "opportunity like this comes once in history and cannot be missed," while calling Trump "the greatest friend that Israel has ever had." Gantz, for his part, said that "the United States can always count on Israel's partnership," while making a not-that-subtle remark that he'd actually accepted the invitation "as the leader of the largest party in Israel."

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