The Israel Air Force (IAF) launched airstrikes on a Hamas military base in northern Gaza, early Monday morning. The operation was carried out mere hours after the IDF discovered several Palestinians to have infiltrated from Gaza into Israel as well as two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that were planted on the border fence.
“The IDF views with great severity the attempt led by Hamas to turn the (Israel-Gaza border) area into a combat zone while attempting to damage and destroy the security and defense infrastructure,” the IDF spokesperson’s unit said in a statement.
“Hamas is solely responsible for everything that happens in and emanates from the Gaza Strip, both above and below ground.”
Activities “below ground” primarily refer to attempts by the Hamas terrorist organization to rebuild its underground terror tunnel infrastructure, much of which was decimated by Israel during Operation Protective Edge in 2014.
The Palestinians who crossed into Israel late Sunday afternoon quickly returned to the Gaza Strip after the IDF fired in their direction. The IEDs were discovered on the Israel-Gaza border fence shortly thereafter.
“After an earlier report regarding the suspects who infiltrated into Israel through the security fence near the Northern Gaza Strip earlier today, IDF troops located two explosive devices placed by the terrorists at the scene,” the IDF explained in a statement.
The IDF’s strike on Monday morning not only follows two rounds of Palestinian riots at the Israel-Gaza border but also several attempts last month to plant IEDs on the border fence.