Early on January 2, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) struck several targets in the Palestinian Gaza Strip in response to the recent rocket attack on the Israeli capital, Tel Aviv.

“Overnight, fighter jets, helicopters, and tanks struck a rocket manufacturing site and military posts belonging to the Hamas terror organization,” the IDF said in a statement.

The rocket attack, which took place on January 1, was reportedly carried out in support of Palestinian detainee Hisham Abu Hawash, who has been on a hunger strike for more than 140 days now. Abu Hawash, who is currently in a critical health condition, is protesting against his administrative detention.


No faction has claimed responsibility for the rocket attack as of yet. Nevertheless, the IDF held the Hamas Movement, the de-facto ruler of the Gaza Strip, responsible for the attack.

Palestinian media sources said that the Israeli strikes targeted a base and three observation posts of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, in southern and northern parts of the Gaza Strip. No casualties were reported.





During the strikes, Palestinian fighters targeted Israeli helicopters with two Soviet-made 9K32 Strela-2 MANPADs [man-portable air-defense system] and heavy machine guns. However, no hits were reported.

Later on, Palestinian fighters fired several rockets over the sea as a part of a live-fire test that was apparently meant as a warning to the IDF.

The situation in Gaza may escalate further in the upcoming days as the issue of Abu Hawash is yet to be resolved. Gaza factions appear to be willing to support the cause of the detainee at all costs. Meanwhile, Egypt is making efforts to de-escalate the situation in the Palestinian enclave.