Jerusalem Post and COLlive
Hamas renewed its rocket fire against Israel at exactly 8 a.m. Friday as the 72-hour cease fire-ended.
Jerusalem had hoped Hamas would agree to another 72 hour extension to allow time for Israeli and Palestinian negotiating teams in Cairo to come to an agreement that would end Operation Protective Edge, which now enters its 32nd day.
Two people were injured by the shrapnel from a mortar shell fired into the Sha’ar Negev Regional Council from Gaza shortly after noon on Friday.
IDF medics in the area provided immediate medical treatment on the scene until a Magen David Adom ambulance arrived.
One of the injured is a 71-year-old man in moderate-to-severe condition. He suffered from extensive blood loss resulting from shrapnel injuries to his arms, according to an MDA official at the scene. He was taken to Soroka University Medical Center.
The second injured person, a 20-year-old man, sustained light injuries and was taken to Barzilai Medical Center, MDA reported.
Earlier in the day, a community’s security fence and several houses were damaged by rocket fire from Gaza.
Jerusalem had hoped Hamas would agree to another 72 hour extension to allow time for Israeli and Palestinian negotiating teams in Cairo to come to an agreement that would end Operation Protective Edge, which has now entered its 32nd day.
Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said his organization had rejected the idea of an extension, but would continue to negotiate.
Eshkol residents were told to stay within 15 seconds of a safe room or bomb shelter. Four hours before the cease-fire ended, when it appeared that the Cairo talks would fail, two mortars from Gaza struck that region.
At 8:00 am sharp, air raid sirens and rockets exploding were heard throughout Ashkelon. By mid-afternoon over 50 rockets had fallen in the area.
“We were hoping to be able to get our lives back to normal,” said Shliach Menachem Lieberman. “Yesterday was the first time the office staff came to work after 29 days.”
On Thursday, Chabad of Ashkelon and a visiting family from Montreal, Canada visited the wounded soldiers in the Barzilie Ashkelon Hospital.
“Especially moving was to see a helmet punctured by shrapnel, a soldier – a member of our Shul – whose leg was badly hurt and a soldier whose face on one side is covered with wounds because that’s where the shell landed,” said Rabbi Lieberman. “We witnessed real self-sacrifice.”
The group distributed gifts, letters from children from Boston and Tefillin to the soldiers.