JERUSALEM – A rocket was fired from the Gaza Strip on Monday and left seven people injured after hitting a house in central Israel, local police said.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) posted a video on Twitter that allegedly shows a property in Mishmeret, around 30 kilometers (19 miles) north of Tel Aviv, destroyed by the missile.
Seven residents were injured in the attack, including a 60-year-old woman who suffered burns and various shrapnel wounds, a 30-year-old woman with shrapnel wounds in her leg, a 12-year-old girl and two small children aged three and one-and-a-half, Israel’s national emergency services, Magen David Adom (“Red Star of David”), reported.
Emergency teams also provided medical attention to several people suffering from anxiety attacks and minor injuries sustained while they were running for shelter.
“A rocket from Gaza hit this Israeli home at 5:20 this morning,” the IDF said in the tweet.
A police spokesperson said the area was cordoned off as the structure was damaged and a fire had erupted following the impact.
The Israeli military held Hamas accountable for the rocket and increased troops deployed in the area with infantry and armored brigades.
“We can confirm that Hamas is responsible for firing a homemade rocket,” IDF said on Twitter.
“It flew a distance of 75 miles across Israel and then destroyed this home,” it added.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that he would cut short his visit to the United States, where he was set to meet with President Donald Trump on Monday, and return immediately to Israel to deal with the security situation.
“There has been a criminal attack on the State of Israel and we will respond forcefully,” Netanyahu said in a statement.
He added: “In light of the security events, I have decided to cut short my visit to the US. In a few hours, I will meet with President Trump. I will return to Israel immediately afterward in order to manage our actions from close at hand.”
The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories said that immediate measures had been taken in response to the attack.
“COGAT Major General Kamil Abu Rukun announced on Monday the closure of the Erez and Kerem Shalom crossings, as well as a reduction of the fishing zone in Gaza until further notice,” COGAT’s official Twitter account said.
According to Maan, the Kerem Shalom crossing serves as the only passage through which Gazans obtain their goods.
The Israeli army reported the activation of anti-aircraft sirens in the Sharon area and the Hefer Valley Regional Council at 5.30 am and said the rocket had been identified as having been launched from Gaza – an area under the control of the Islamist movement Hamas – where tension with Israel has escalated in recent weeks.
On Sunday, sirens started blaring in several Israeli locations adjacent to the Palestinian enclave after around 300 grenades and explosives were launched against the Israel-Gaza barrier by young Palestinians forming part of the “Night Confusion Units,” which participated in the so-called Great March of Return.
One Palestinian died and three others were wounded by Israeli gunfire during riots that took place on Saturday night, according to the Palestinian ministry of health.
On March 30, Palestinians in Gaza are set to celebrate the “March of the Million” to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the beginning of the Great March of Return, which demands an end to the blockade imposed by Israel on the Strip and claims the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homeland in what is now the Israeli state.
Over the past year, more than 260 Palestinians have died in clashes with the Israeli army and about 29,000 have been provided medical care, 40 percent of them for gunshot wounds, according to the Palestinian health ministry.