Rocket fired into Israel from Gaza, intercepted by Iron Dome
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Rocket fired into Israel from Gaza, intercepted by Iron Dome

No reports of injury or damage as projectile fired at border communities

Illustrative: A barrage of rockets being fired from the Hamas-run Palestinian enclave, as seen from the Israel-Gaza border, on May 5, 2019. (Jack Guez/AFP)
Illustrative: A barrage of rockets being fired from the Hamas-run Palestinian enclave, as seen from the Israel-Gaza border, on May 5, 2019. (Jack Guez/AFP)

Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip on Friday fired at least one rocket into Israel, which was intercepted by the Iron Dome defense system, the Israel Defense Forces said.

There were no reports of injury or damage.

Rocket sirens wailed in southern Israel on Friday evening near the Gaza border and local residents reported hearing explosions.

The sirens sounded in the town of Sderot, and in the communities of Or Haner, Nir Am, Erez and Gevim.

The rocket fire came after several thousand Palestinians joined protests on the Gaza Strip border earlier Friday, with several hundred rioting and throwing stones and explosive devices at Israeli troops.

Soldiers responded with tear gas and occasional live fire. The Hamas-run Gaza health ministry said 16 Palestinians had been injured.

For the past year, Palestinians have staged regular marches on the Gaza border known collectively as the Great March of Return. The spring of 2019 saw a dramatic increase in the level of violence along the Gaza border, with near nightly riots and airborne arson attacks, but the violence waned in recent weeks due to a de facto ceasefire agreement between Israel and the Gaza-ruling Hamas terror group.

However, recent weeks have also seen several serious infiltration attempts into Israel.

In a span of 10 days, six armed Palestinian terrorists — many of them current and former Hamas members — got through the security fence surrounding the Gaza Strip before being killed by Israeli troops. In one case on August 1, the gunman opened fire at IDF soldiers, injuring three of them, before he was shot dead.

Last Saturday, a group of four heavily armed terrorists, carrying assault rifles, rocket-propelled grenade launchers and rations, attempted to infiltrate Israeli territory before they were spotted and shot dead by troops on the border.

The Hamas terror group, which has ruled Gaza since 2007, has sought to distance itself from these attacks, saying they were carried out by angry young men.

Hamas deployed additional troops to the frontier in a bid to prevent breaches of the border fence, understanding that these cross-border attacks risked provoking a harsh response by the Israeli military, according to the Palestinian Amad news outlet.

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