Gaza rocket hits field in southern Israel
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Gaza rocket hits field in southern Israel

Sirens wail in border communities a day after clashes between Israeli forces, Palestinians left a Gaza man dead

Illustrative: A trail of smoke from a rocket as it was launched from the Gaza Strip toward the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon, August 24, 2014. (Edi Israel/Flash90/File)
Illustrative: A trail of smoke from a rocket as it was launched from the Gaza Strip toward the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon, August 24, 2014. (Edi Israel/Flash90/File)

A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip landed in an open field in southern Israel on Wednesday. No injuries or damage were reported.

Air raid sirens wailed in kibbutzim adjacent to the northern Gaza Strip, warning of incoming missiles.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

Recent rocket fire from the Gaza Strip has been claimed by a Islamic State-affiliated Salafist group at odds with Hamas.

Wednesday’s incident followed days of sporadic clashes between Israeli security forces and Palestinians along the Gaza border. Gaza officials said Tuesday that a Palestinian man was killed and several others were injured when protesters clashed with IDF troops near the border fence.

In the southern Strip, Israeli security forces on Tuesday targeted a Palestinian cell the army said was responsible for sniper attacks on troops patrolling the border fence in recent weeks.

Officials from Gaza’s Hamas-run Health Ministry said that 27-year-old Ahmed Sharif al-Sarhi sustained a fatal gunshot wound when IDF soldiers used live ammunition on a group of dozens of protesters gathered at the fence, east of the al-Bureij refugee camp in the center of the Palestinian enclave. A pro-Iran Palestinian splinter group claimed al-Sarhi was one of its members.

Several dozen protesters also clashed with Israeli forces at the Erez border crossing in northern Gaza. Palestinian media reported three people were injured in al-Bureij and a fourth was hurt at Erez.

Protesters rolled burning tires and threw rocks and firebombs at Israeli troops, and said soldiers used tear gas and fired in the direction of the rioters in order to disperse them, the Hebrew-language daily Haaretz reported.

Earlier Tuesday, the IDF instructed Israeli farmers who work up within one kilometer of the fence to stay away from the 50-kilometer (30-mile) border, warning of gunfire from Palestinian snipers, the Walla website reported.

Palestinians from Gaza have broken through the border fence with Israel several times in the last two weeks, as well as staged protests in solidarity with West Bank Palestinians who have repeatedly clashed with Israeli troops.

At least 12 Palestinians were reported to have been killed in the recent clashes between Gazan demonstrators and IDF soldiers.

During a visit to the IDF’s Gaza Division Headquarters in the Western Negev earlier that day, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu received a security briefing that said the Gaza border was “under control.”

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