Mount Hermon, site of Syrian mortar attack.
Israel air force

The Israel Air Force (IAF) has responded twice in the past 24 hours to attacks from Gaza and Syria.

On Saturday, a rocket was sent from Hamas-ruled Gaza, landing in an open area in the Eshkol Regional Council. Two weeks ago, a rocket shot from Gaza landed in the Sha’ar HaNegev area. Nobody was injured in either attack.

Iaf strikes

Israel Air Force airshow over Tel Aviv on Independence Day, 2014. (Photo: Roni Schutzer/FLASH90)

In response, the IAF targeted two terrorist centers, one in southern Gaza and one in central Gaza, in the wee hours of Monday morning, with direct strikes. IDF Spokesman Peter Lerner explained that the IDF actions “are a direct response to Gaza terrorist aggression against the citizens of southern Israel. The unlawful Gaza rocket attacks, meant to terrorize, maim and kill Israelis will not be allowed to become routine.”

The IDF “will fulfill its obligation to protect Israel and seek out and destroy the capabilities of those who wish to attack us,” Lerner added.

On Monday, the IAF responded to a barrage of four mortar shells from Syria, one of which landed on Mount Hermon, in Israel’s Golan Heights. Nobody was injured, but the shell landed near an IDF (Israel Defense Forces) position, and an investigation is under way to determine whether the location was targeted. Israel fired artillery at the mortar’s origin, illustrating Lerner’s claim, “We regard this attack with utmost severity.”

The Israel-Syria border area sees occasional exchanges of fire, but Lerner said that the attack was a “blatant violation of the sovereignty of the State of Israel.”

Written by: Anne Gordon, United with Israel