Israel says it has intercepted rockets fired from Gaza


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The Israeli army said that Palestinian militants fired a missile at Israel from the Gaza Strip on Sunday night, adding that the missile was intercepted.

The rocket launch came at a time of heightened tensions after six Palestinian militants escaped from an Israeli prison last week and hostilities continued from an 11-day war last May.

Over the weekend, Israel arrested four of the six escaped prisoners and stepped up its search for the remaining fugitives.

In response, Gaza militants fired rockets into Israel for three consecutive nights. Israel usually responds to rocket fire with air strikes on targets linked to the Hamas terror group in Gaza.

Tensions were exacerbated by the continuing difficulties in achieving a long-term ceasefire between Israel and Hamas following the war in May.

Egypt is trying to broker an agreement. Hamas has demanded that Israel lift the painful economic blockade of Gaza, while Israel wants Hamas to release Israeli civilians and return the remains of two Israeli soldiers it is holding.

Nor have Israel and Hamas been able to agree on a system that would allow Qatar to deliver welfare payments to thousands of families in Gaza.

Israel says it is seeking guarantees that Hamas will not divert any of the funds for military use.


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