Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel / Flash 90
Iron Dome anti-missile defense battery set up in the southern Israeli city of Sderot fires an intercepting missile.

Iron Dome fighters shot down two rockets over the city of Sderot late Thursday night, launched by Gaza terrorists. The system was activated when it became clear the rockets were heading for heavily populated areas in Israel shortly after 10 pm Thursday night, the IDF said.

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Residents in Ashkelon and Kiryat Gat reported hearing explosions.

The Red Alert incoming rocket siren was triggered by the launches at Sapir College as well as in Sderot, Mefalsim and in a number of other Gaza border communities.

Rockets were fired at Israel in the early morning hours, again in the late morning just after 11 am, and then again in the late afternoon around 5 pm, in addition to the attack shortly after 10 pm.

It was not immediately clear how Israel would respond to the rocket fire, or if there would be a military response at all; analysts on several news stations noted that Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror groups were having difficulty reining in their more militant members while the leadership was making an effort to keep the ceasefire in place.

Community leaders living along the Gaza border decided to keep the schools closed on Friday. “Following the rocket sirens in the area, the forum of the heads of the Gaza border councils decided that tomorrow (Friday) there will be no studies at any educational institutions in the councils surrounding Gaza,” the heads of the local authorities said in a joint statement.

No School Friday in Gaza Border Communities After Multiple Ceasefire Breaches

“We are in contact with the IDF and are monitoring developments,” the statement read. “The decision was made out of concern for students and educational staff.”

The city of Ashkelon announced that it, too, will close its schools on Friday due to the risk of rocket fire, according to a report by Channel 12. The announcement was made after Gaza terrorists launched their late-night attack on Israel shortly after 10 pm, violating the so-called “ceasefire” for the fourth time since it began 5 am Thursday morning.

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