12 December, 2017
Two Palestinian Islamic Jihad militants riding on a motorcycle in Gaza were killed in an explosion on Tuesday which the group implied was caused by an accidental detonation during preparations for an attack.
On Monday night Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system intercepted at least one rocket fired from the Gaza Strip into Israeli, the IDF's Spokesperson's office said in a statement.
Tensions have steadily risen between Israel and Gaza since last week, when Trump announced recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, setting off protests along the border, among other places, and a call by Gaza's Hamas rulers for a new intifada.
Rocket alarm sirens blared across communities surrounding the Gaza Strip, but the rocket fire appeared to be aimed at the coastal city of Ashkelon, some 20 kilometers away. The rocket was successfully intercepted by an Iron Dome battery.
Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, a military spokesman, told reporters that Israel had used a new set of "tools" developed since a 2014 war with Hamas in order to destroy the tunnel.
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The circumstances of the incident, which occurred near Gaza's northern border with Israel, were initially unclear.
Speaking shortly after it was cleared for publication that the IDF had uncovered a cross-border terror tunnel near the Gaza Strip border, GOC Southern Command Maj. According to the IDF, the recent attacks came in response to the launch of rockets by Hamas from Gaza toward Israel, however, "hits have not yet been identified".
Israel hit a number of Hamas positions in retaliation, killing two members of the terror group, which is the de-facto ruler of the Palestinian enclave.
Four other Gazans, including two Hamas militants, have died since the announcement last Wednesday.