Renewed fighting on Gaza Border

Yesterday the BBC’s Jeremy Bowen reported that ‘the atmosphere in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is more combustible than it has been since the end of the second Palestinian uprising more than a decade ago.’

And at the same time fighting has flared up again on the Gaza border. This morning the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) reported a mortar attack that was the seventh in a series of attacks upon their soldiers since Tuesday.

IDF near Gaza border (photo credit: AP/Tsafrir Abayov)

For several days the Israelis have been working in the area of the Gaza border and have uncovered another terror tunnel stretching into Israel. This is the second such tunnel to be discovered in recent weeks and confirms the dilemma that the Israelis face in allowing construction materials into Gaza.

The Al-Qassam Brigades of Hamas have warned the Israelis that they will not allow the continuation of the ‘current military incursions inside the Gaza Strip.’

The Islamic Jihad Movement has also warned that ‘the Palestinian resistance will not stand idly by watching Israel's escalation of its aggression against the Gaza Strip.’

As a result of all this the head of the IDF’s Southern Command has issued an order declaring the surrounding area a closed military zone. This is the area surrounding Kibbutz Sufa, which is just a few kilometres north of the important Kerem Shalom crossing.

There are no reports of Israeli casualties, but the Gaza health ministry reports three injured in an Israeli air strike that targeted a metal workshop.