| 26 February 2024, Monday |

Israel launches fresh airstrikes on Gaza for first time since last month’s ceasefire

Palestinian Wafa news agency said Israeli warplanes has launched a fresh round of airstrikes on the besieged Gaza Strip, early on Wednesday. The first such attack since the end of the 11-day onslaught by the occupying entity on the coastal enclave last month. The Israelis bombed with several missiles a site in Khan Yunis, south of Gaza Strip, and another site south of Gaza City.

Media reports said the bombing only caused material damage in the targeted areas and left no casualties.

Palestine’s Shehab news agency  said the site in Khan Yunis was a military compound in Ma’an area that belonged to the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas.

Tel Aviv claimed that the airstrikes were conducted after the launching of incendiary balloons by Palestinian resistance groups towards the illegal Israeli settlements adjacent to the Gaza Strip.

Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem said the Israeli bombing of the Gaza Strip was a “failed attempt” to stop Palestinian people’s solidarity with the occupied Jerusalem-al-Quds, and to cover up the unprecedented state of confusion for the Zionist regime in organizing the so-called “march of the flags.”

On Tuesday, Israeli forces attacked Palestinians protesting against the march by far-right Israeli settlers commemorating the regime’s seizure and subsequent occupation of East Jerusalem al-Quds in 1967.

The Palestinian Red Crescent said 33 people were injured during the clashes.

Meanwhile, at least six Palestinians were arrested by Israeli soldiers, while scores more were attacked and evicted from the Damascus Gate, the main entry to the Muslim Quarter of the Old City.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad resistance Movements in the Gaza Strip had warned they would respond firmly to any provocative acts and the Israeli so-called “march of the flags.”

Separately, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh had sounded the alarm about dangerous repercussions of the Israeli event.

The Wednesday’s airstrikes were the first major flare-up between the Israeli regime and Palestinian resistance groups since an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire on May 21 ended 11 days of heavy fighting that claimed the lives of hundreds of Palestinians.

Wafa news agency announced on Tuesday that a Palestinian succumbed to wounds he had sustained during the Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip last month.

The Palestinian was identified as Mo’ayad Hamdan from Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza.

Tel Aviv launched the bombing campaign against the besieged Gaza Strip on May 10, following Palestinian retaliation against violent raids on worshipers at al-Aqsa Mosque and the regime’s plans to force a number of Palestinian families out of their homes at the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem al-Quds.

Apparently caught off guard by the unprecedented barrage of rockets from Gaza, Israel announced a unilateral ceasefire on May 21, which Palestinian resistance movements accepted with Egyptian mediation.