Israel’s recent strikes against Hamas are in response to a rocket attack targeting the Nahal Oz military base.
In a statement the Israeli army repeated its policy of holding “Hamas accountable for all attacks emanating from the Gaza Strip.”
Hamas’s military wing confirmed the strikes targeted one of its bases near Rafah in southern Gaza and in the Nuseirat refugee camp.
The United Nations envoy for the Middle East warned the Security Council on Wednesday of a “highly volatile” situation in Gaza.
“Recent events clearly demonstrate that the spectre of violence looms ominously over the territory, unless radically more is done to address the chronic realities in Gaza, it is not a question of ‘if’, but rather of ‘when’ another escalation will take place.”
Despite a long-term peace process and the general reconciliation of Israel with Egypt and Jordan, Israelis and Palestinians have failed to reach a final peace agreement. The remaining key issues are: mutual recognition, borders, security, water rights, control of Jerusalem, Israeli settlements, Palestinian freedom of movement and Palestinian right of return.
The violence of the conflict, in a region rich in sites of historic, cultural and religious interest worldwide, has been the object of numerous international conferences dealing with historic rights, security issues and human rights, and has been a factor hampering tourism in and general access to areas that are hotly contested.
According to the Israeli Army, nine projectiles fired from the Gaza Strip have hit Israel since the start of 2016.