Rare ma­chine-gun fire from Gaza hits Sderot

Jerusalem Post - - FRONT PAGE - • By TOVAH LAZAROFF

Pales­tinian ma­chine-gun fire from Gaza struck Sderot on Wed­nes­day evening for the first time in the his­tory of the south­ern city, which has lived un­der in­ter­mit­tent rocket fire from the Strip for the past 17 years.

Bul­lets hit about five homes, shock­ing res­i­dents but caus­ing no in­juries.

“This is a se­ri­ous in­ci­dent,” the IDF said, adding that Ha­mas is re­spon­si­ble for ev­ery­thing that hap­pens in the Gaza Strip.

The IDF re­sponded fairly quickly with tank fire against two ob­ser­va­tion posts in south­ern Gaza. No ca­su­al­ties were re­ported.

Sderot Mayor Alon Da­vidi said the re­sponse was in­suf­fi­cient. He called for a much sharper strike on the Ha­mas-con­trolled ter­ri­tory.

“The re­sponse for a bullet must be the same as the re­sponse for a rocket,” Da­vidi said.

“This is the first time ma­chine-gun fire has hit the city,” he said, adding that Sderot can­not en­ter a new re­al­ity where this be­comes ac­cepted and com­mon­place.

“We can­not al­low this to hap­pen,” Da­vidi said.

Wed­nes­day’s at­tack on the city was just as se­ri­ous as when Ha­mas fires a rocket, builds an at­tack tun­nel un­der the bor­der or at­tempts to in­fil­trate Is­rael by cutting

through the se­cu­rity fence, he said.

“You can’t brush it off be­cause no one was hurt,” Da­vidi said. “It was not a good feel­ing to see the bul­lets in the walls and the window shut­ters.”

Among those whose home was hit by bul­lets was for­mer Sderot mayor Eli Moyal, who for many years was the face of the bat­tle the city waged with the government to take Pales­tinian rocket fire se­ri­ously.

“I was at home when I heard a huge boom, and the house shook,” he said.

“I thought it was a Kas­sam rocket,” Moyal told Channel 2, adding that then he saw shrap­nel in his yard, and he un­der­stood that this was not the usual at­tack.

Another Sderot res­i­dent, Sami Moyal, told Army Ra­dio he was home study­ing To­rah for the up­com­ing Shavuot hol­i­day and sip­ping cof­fee when bullet frag­ments and shrap­nel broke a window and hit his gar­den.

Ear­lier on Wed­nes­day, shots were fired from Gaza at IDF sol­diers. In re­sponse, a tank struck a Ha­mas po­si­tion in the north­ern Strip, ac­cord­ing to the IDF Spokesper­son’s Unit. No ca­su­al­ties were re­ported as a re­sult of the ex­change.

Two months ago, a heavy bar­rage of Pales­tinian ma­chine-gun fire from Gaza trig­gered the Iron Dome mis­sile-de­fense sys­tem, but it did not cause any dam­age in Is­rael.


A HOLE IS seen in the roof of a home in Sderot af­ter it was hit by a ma­chine-gun bullet (in­set) fired from Gaza.

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