The Grad rocket fired at Israel from Gaza Tuesday was aimed at the Ashkelon power plant, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz said.
The rocket was fired from the Gaza Strip at Ashkelon early Tuesday morning, breaking months of quiet between Israel and the Palestinian enclave.
The rocket hit a road in an industrial area in the south of the city around 7 a.m.. There were no injuries, although the road was damaged.
The al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade initially claimed responsibility for firing the rocket, saying it was retaliation for Palestinian prisoner Arafat Jaradat’s death in an Israeli prison on Saturday. The terrorist group, associated with Fatah, had published a leaflet on Monday urging a harsh response against Israel for Jaradat’s death. On Thursday, though, Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack — a claim Israeli officials said was more credible.
The shooting was the first rocket attack in three months, breaking the truce between Israel and Hamas that has held since the conclusion of Operation Pillar of Defense.
Gantz, speaking Thursday with high school students in Rosh Haayin, said that Israel knew who was behind the shooting. He added that the IDF was working tirelessly to prevent further such attacks.
“More information about our deterrence methods exists, but cannot be revealed,” he said.
He said there was a possibility of more clashes with Gaza in the future, but rejected suggestions that Israel was facing a third Intifada.
“I do not think we see such a thing unfolding before our eyes,” he said, referring to the recent upsurge of violence in the West Bank. “But the conflict level may rise, so we are prepared and we are convinced that we will know how to contain such events properly.”
Meanwhile on Friday afternoon, an Israeli military vehicle was damaged when Palestinians in the northern Gaza Strip shot rifle fire toward the border fence for the first time since Pillar of Defense. The damaged vehicle belonged to a high-ranking IDF officer. No one was injured.
An Israeli military spokeswoman said Palestinians also hurled rocks and firebombs over the Gaza border fence and that IDF soldiers shot and wounded three rioters.