Tuesday, 26 September 2017 12:56 GMT

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Palestinian gunners hit Israeli towns, target offshore gas grid

(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) Palestinian gunners in Gaza on Saturday fired rocket volleys in direction of several Israeli towns and settlements including one of Israel's two offshore gas platforms, some of Tel Aviv's strategic installations.

The Palestinian militants fired a large number of rockets at several Israeli inhabited regions where sirens were blared for civilians to take safety precautions. One of the incoming rockets crashed into the town of Ashdod, triggering fires, the military spokesman said, adding that another rocket directly hit a building in Eshkol inflicting damage.

Meanwhile, the Israeli media reported that the military supervised civilians' evacuation of Kibbutz settlement in southwestern Negev after the region was targeted with a hail of missiles.

Al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of Islamic Jihad, said its gunners fired a couple of Grad rockets on Kiryat Malakhi settlement and unleashed three others on Ashdod. The group reported unleashing a number of other rockets and mortar shells on Israeli towns and outposts.

Among the key installations, targeted with the rockets, was one of Israel's two offshore gas grids, located roughly 19 nautical miles from the shores, the Brigades said.

The Israeli Army has remained tightlipped on this attack.

There are two gas platforms off the coast of southern Israel. The main one is the production platform for the Tamar field, Israel's largest producing gas reserve. Tamar fuels an increasing proportion of the country's electricity.

At the political level, Sami Abu Zuhri, spokesman of the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, said the movement would "consider any proposal for resumption of the negotiations with Israel."

Earlier, Egypt, sponsor of the indirect Palestinian-Israeli talks, invited the two parties again to the negotiating table.

Cairo had sponsored previous rounds of talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians however, each time they hit snags at the table, they would resume the tit for tat hostilities.

Israeli air and ground attacks on Gaza Strip, where Islamic Jihad and Hamas' diehard warriors are entrenched, have continued with the number of Palestinians' deaths jumping to 2,095, while the tally for the wounded reaching 10,550, said Palestinian medical sources.

The recent development in the Gaza Strip coincided with a reported European ceasefire initiative, being examined at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), aimed at halting the wide-scale Israeli offensive which began on July 8.

The Israelis have employed a large number of infantrymen, equipped with heavy arms, big-caliber artillery batteries and rocket launchers in the fighting against the Gaza fighters, who have been battling on the ground and with retaliatory missile attacks, using many locally-improvised rockets. The Israeli attacks, also involving military aircraft, have caused extensive damage throughout the narrow strip of some 1.5 million population.

The Palestinian military factions continued to issue statements that they will retaliate against the Israeli military actions with rockets aimed at cities and towns in Israel.

The rockets launched on Israel usually result in panic with many Israelis seeking shelter. Most of the rockets are intercepted by the Israeli Iron Dome anti-missile system.
Palestinian gunners hit Israeli towns, target offshore gas grid

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