Photo Credit: Carmel Horowitz, IDF
Viper attack helicopter launches a missile. (illustrative)

The IDF is continuing to strike terrorist squads launching firebomb balloons at Israel from Gaza, with fighter pilots working overtime and the military using other means as well.

An air strike targeted one such terror cell a few minutes before 6 pm Sunday as it was launching the incendiary balloons from northern Gaza.

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“The IDF views the launching of arson balloons and kites with great severity and will continue to operate with increasing force against those who carry out this type of terror activity,” the IDF said.

Israeli military forces also prepared for other scenarios before nightfall, less than 24 hours after a weekend in which Gaza terrorists had fired some 200 rockets, missiles and mortar shells at southern Israeli residents. Four members of one family sustained shrapnel wounds when one of the rockets exploded at their home in Sderot. Other rockets landed in the courtyard of a synagogue, and inside a children’s playground in the city.

“In accordance with the situation assessment, the IDF reinforced its Iron Dome aerial defense batteries in the area of Gush Dan in central Israel and in southern Israel,” the IDF added in its statement. “In addition, several reserve soldiers were called up to reinforce the Aerial Defense Array.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.