As Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip continue to launch rocket after rocket into world-regions, the Israeli Defense Forces Thursday said at least three had been fired from Lebanon, the country to the north.
“A short while ago, three rockets were fired from Lebanon into the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of northern Israel,” the IDF tweeted around 3 p.m. ET.
The rockets splashed down into the sea, officials said, but the launches risk further escalating a deadly conflict as the Biden administration is urging both sides to stand down.
An Israeli artillery unit fires toward targets in Gaza Strip, at the Israeli Gaza border, Thursday, May 13, 2021. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the launches. Lebanese media reported that authorities there had made arrests in connection with the attack.
Hezbollah, an Iran-backed militant Lebanese group, has clashed with Israel before, including last July in a dispute over contested territory. And Palestinian militants also operate in the southern part of Lebanon.
In 2006, Hezbollah kicked off a month-long ground war with Israel after launching rocket attacks and an ambush on Israeli forces.
The current fighting is the worst since 2014, according to the IDF, which said it had killed at least 14 terrorist leaders linked to Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
Hamas, which has been designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. and Israel, has claimed responsibility for the rockets launched out of Gaza.
More than 1,200 rockets have been launched since Monday, according to the IDF, with about 90% of them shot down by the country’s vaunted Iron Dome missile defense system.
Graphic explains Israel’s defense system. Israel’s military says the Iron Dome Aerial Defense System has intercepted hundreds of rockets.
Meanwhile, as the IDF counterattacks militants, civilian mobs have been rioting in various parts of the country, especially mixed Muslim and Jewish areas, including the city of Lod.
Gaza health officials said the Palestinian death toll was at 103 Thursday, including 27 children and 11 women, with more than 500 wounded. Israeli officials reported seven deaths in Israel, including a soldier and a 6-year-old boy whose home was struck by a rocket.
“He loved the Ninja Turtles, his parents, and life,” the IDF said.
His name was Ido.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.