The IDF at the Gaza border on Wednesday, as tensions rise. (Tsafrir Abayov/AP) (Tsafrir Abayov/AP)
IDF at Gaza border

As fighting intensifies at the Gaza border after almost two years of relative quiet, the IDF is determined to safeguard the civilian population in southern Israel and sovereignty over the border area.

On Friday morning, in response to several mortar attacks against IDF forces at the Gaza border, the Israel Air Force targeted a Hamas terror infrastructure in the southern Gaza Strip.

Since Wednesday – for the first time since Operation Protective Edge almost two years ago – Hamas has repeatedly launched mortar rounds against the Israeli forces, triggering an IDF response. A woman in her 50s was killed by the gunfire Thursday evening in the southern Gazan city of Khan Yunis.

An estimated 16 mortar shells were fired at the IDF in more than a dozen incidents.

The IDF announced on Thursday that it uncovered another Hamas terror tunnel extending into Israel – the second to be exposed in the last couple of weeks.

Khalil Al-Hayya, a member of the Hamas politburo, announced that Israel and Hamas have reached a deal to deescalate the situation mediated by Egypt, Qatar and the United Nations, TPS reported, adding that Muhammad Deif, commander of the Hamas military wing, ordered an escalation of attacks, according to Palestinian sources.

‘Repeated Attacks Against IDF Will Not Be Tolerated’

“The repeated attacks against the IDF activities to locate and destroy cross border tunnels will not be tolerated,” Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, the IDF spokesman, stated. “Hamas’ diabolical plan to infiltrate into Israeli communities must be stopped. The IDF has the obligation and a duty to safeguard the people in southern Israel and the sovereignty of our borders, and we will continue to do so.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu held a cabinet meeting Friday morning to discuss the security situation.

By: Terri Nir, United with Israel