WATCH: IDF Strikes 'Workshop' in Gaza After Hamas Rocket Launch

© Sputnik ScreenshotAn Israeli Air Force airstrike in Gaza's Khan Yunis on April 19, 2022
An Israeli Air Force airstrike in Gaza's Khan Yunis on April 19, 2022 - Sputnik International, 1920, 18.04.2022
On Monday evening, Israeli air defenses intercepted a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip toward Israel, coming amid days of unrest in Jerusalem, which both Israel and the Palestinian National Authority claim as their capital city.
Early on Tuesday morning, observers in Gaza reported airstrikes by the Israeli Air Force.
Explosions were reported in Khan Yunis, in the western part of the territory, and were captured on video posted to social media.
In response, Hamas said it fired anti-air missiles at the IAF fighters.
"Fighter aircraft attacked several components last night (Tuesday) and destroyed a workshop for the production of weapons by the Hamas terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip," the IAF said in a statement posted to Twitter. "The attack was carried out in response to a launch, which was intercepted earlier tonight (Monday) by air defense fighters. The IDF considers Hamas responsible for what is happening in the Gaza Strip."
The exchange is the first since early January and comes amid an increase in violence in Jerusalem. For Muslims, the holy month of Ramadan began in early April, and for Jews, Passover week began on Friday. In addition, last weekend and this coming weekend will see Easter celebrations by Christian sects.
Both Jews and Muslims venerate the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, which was once the site of the Temple of Solomon but now holds the Dome of the Rock and the surrounding al-Aqsa mosque. After Israel captured East Jerusalem in 1967, violence around the Temple Mount became commonplace, with Israeli police storming the compound and Palestinian resisters fighting back with rocks and fireworks, as happened earlier this month.
More than 340 people were injured in clashes on Friday, according to the Red Crescent, and another 200 the following day.
“Our Palestinian people are committed to holding to their rights, land and holy sites,” Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said on Monday. “All attempts to dominate al-Aqsa Mosque or change its Islamic identity will not succeed.”
In May 2021, a similar sequence of events triggered an 11-day war between Hamas and the IDF that killed 254 Gazans and 13 Israelis.
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