Guided missiles from Israel’s Iron Dome air defense system are shown over Gaza City on February 23 intercepting rockets launched from the Palestinian enclave toward Israeli territory. (Mahmud Hams/AFP via Getty Images)

Rockets from Gaza Strip Hit Israel, No Casualties Reported

At least 20 rockets were launched from the Gaza Strip toward Israel late Sunday afternoon, and again in the early evening, apparently in retaliation for a clash along the border earlier in the day. There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage, with the Israeli military saying that about half of the rockets in the initial salvo were intercepted by the Iron Dome air defense system, with the others falling in open areas. On Sunday morning, Israeli troops killed a member of the Gaza-based Islamic Jihad who was said to have just planted an explosive device against the border fence. A military loader with a large scoop then crossed into the Gaza Strip and retrieved the body, apparently as part of a new Defense Ministry directive stemming from a refusal by Hamas, the Islamic group that rules the enclave, to return the bodies of two Israeli soldiers killed during fighting in 2014. There were no immediate claims of responsibility for the rocket launches – although Islamic Jihad, which is often at odds with Hamas over its policies of engagement with the Israelis, said on its website that the afternoon salvo had been the work of the “resistance.”

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