Photo Credit: Abed Rahim Khatib / Flash 90
A ball of fire and smoke rises during Israeli airstrikes in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, August 16, 2020.

Israeli military forces attacked two Hamas rocket manufacturing sites on Saturday in response to rockets fired at southern Israel from Gaza earlier in the day. The attack blew up 16 tons of underground explosives. Laser guided bunker buster bombs were used for the attack on Hamas, according to a Mako report.

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Combat pilots targeted a Hamas underground facility in central Gaza used to produce rocket materials and a ground-level rocket manufacturing site.

The IAF air strikes, carried out “in response to rocket launches and machine gun fire from the Gaza Strip into Israeli territory,” were aimed at degrading the terrorists’ ability to manufacture rockets, the IDF said.

Just a few hours after President Joe Biden departed for Saudi Arabia from Ben Gurion International Airport, Gaza terrorists fired four rockets at Israel in two separate attacks.

There were no reports of physical injuries or damage in either attack. Two Ashkelon residents were treated for severe anxiety.

Two of the rockets, launched at around 1 am Saturday, were aimed at the southern coastal city of Ashkelon, and two others were aimed at the Lachish Regional Council district.

One of the rockets aimed at Ashkelon was intercepted by the Iron Dome aerial defense system, indicating it was headed to a populated area. The other landed in an open area.

At around 5 am, as Israeli forces were responding to that initial attack, Gaza terrorists launched the second round of rockets, triggering Red Alert incoming rocket sirens in Moshav Ahuzam, near Kiryat Gat. Both missiles landed in open areas.

“In response to the rockets fired from Gaza at Israel … we targeted one of Hamas’ most significant rocket production sites in Gaza,” the IDF said in a statement.

“This strike will significantly impede Hamas’ force-building capabilities. We will continue to defend Israeli civilians from Hamas’ terrorism,” the IDF added.

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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.