Is­rael de­ploys rocket de­fence sys­tem

The Gulf Today - - Middle East -

TEL AVIV: Is­rael’s mil­i­tary says it de­ployed a rocket de­fence sys­tem to the cen­ter of the coun­try amid threats by groups in Gaza .

It said on Tues­day that an Iron Dome bat­tery was de­ployed, with­out elab­o­rat­ing. The sys­tem de­fends against short-range rock­ets, and in­ter­cepted hun­dreds of pro­jec­tiles ired by Pales­tini­ans dur­ing the 2014 Gaza war.

The move fol­lows a warn­ing by Is­rael’s prime min­is­ter and mil­i­tary to Gazans against at­tacks.

Is­lamic Ji­had, an Iran-backed group in Gaza, has vowed re­venge for the de­mo­li­tion of one of its at­tack tun­nels last month that crossed into Is­rael.

It was a rare lare-up along the tense bor­der, which has re­mained mostly quiet since the 2014 Is­rael-ha­mas war.

Dur­ing the ight­ing, Gaza gun­men on sev­eral oc­ca­sions in­il­trated Is­rael through a tun­nel net­work. Is­rael’s army said on Mon­day that it had ar­rested a se­nior Is­lamic Ji­had mem­ber as ten­sions with the group rose af­ter the army blew up one of its tun­nels from Gaza.

The army ar­rested the “se­nior op­er­a­tive” overnight in Arraba near Jenin in the north of the oc­cu­pied West Bank, Is­rael’s mil­i­tary said.

A source with Is­lamic Ji­had conirmed that one of its lead­ers, Tareq Qadaan, was de­tained as part of an “ar­rest cam­paign.”

There were no im­me­di­ate de­tails on whether oth­ers were ar­rested.

Later on Mon­day, Is­raeli me­dia said the army had raised its level of alert ad­ja­cent to the bor­der with Gaza as a pre­cau­tion against pos­si­ble Is­lamic Ji­had re­tal­i­a­tion for the tun­nel blast.

Sep­a­rately, Is­raeli au­thor­i­ties said on Mon­day that they would bar en­try to the coun­try of a group of French politi­cians seek­ing to visit jailed Pales­tinian leader Mar­wan Bargh­outi.

The de­ci­sion was part of con­tro­ver­sial ef­forts by Is­rael’s gov­ern­ment to bar sup­port­ers of a boy­cott of the coun­try over its oc­cu­pa­tion of Pales­tinian ter­ri­tory.

Is­rael’s in­te­rior and pub­lic se­cu­rity min­istries in a joint state­ment sug­gested that the del­e­ga­tion “not ly at all.”

Politi­cians from France’s Com­mu­nist party and from the hard-left France Un­bowed party, in­clud­ing four par­lia­ment mem­bers, said they planned to visit Is­rael and the Pales­tinian ter­ri­to­ries from Nov.18-nov.23.

The del­e­ga­tion hoped to meet Bargh­outi, a prom­i­nent Pales­tinian leader and pris­oner who is serv­ing ive life sen­tences for mur­der over his role in the se­cond Pales­tinian in­tifada, or up­ris­ing, of 2000 to 2005.

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