A rocket was launched out of Gaza Thursday afternoon, setting off sirens in the Ashkelon region. The projectile fell in an open area, causing no injuries or damage.
In January, government figures show, Gaza-based terror groups fired three times as many rockets at Israel as during an average month in 2013. These included 20 mortar and rocket attacks on Israel’s southern communities, two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) set off on the Gaza-Israel border and two incidents where the IDF stopped militants attempting to launch rockets.
Most of the attacks were carried out by fringe groups operating in Gaza who sought to undermine the Hamas regime, the security establishment determined, according to Israeli daily Maariv.
While Hamas has refrained, for the most part, from directly attacking Israel in order to avoid another invasion, it has also been less proactive in preventing attacks, which it had previously done with relative success after Egypt helped mediate a ceasefire to end operation “Pillar of Defense” in November 2012.