IDF Increases Presence Along Border as Gaza Protests, Hamas Violence Escalates
Pictured Above: Palestinian protesters clash with Israeli security forces near the Gaza-Israel border on Sept. 28, 2018. Photo by Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90.
(JNS) Additional troops and Iron Dome missile-defense systems have been deployed to the Israeli border with Gaza following an uptick in riots along the security fence.
“It was decided to send large numbers of reinforcements in the coming days to the Southern Command and to continue the determined policy of thwarting terror attacks and preventing infiltrations into Israel from the Gaza security fence,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.
Negotiations between Israel and Hamas aimed at brokering a ceasefire, with Hamas ramping up rioting and violence on the border when talks went stale, including new units that perform attacks during the nighttime and early-morning hours.
Hamas’s riots—comprised in part by demonstrators recruited by the terror organization—have been ongoing since March 30, when the Gaza ruling body urged residents to take part in the “March of Return” to lands inside Israel, including Jerusalem.
Thousands of Gazans have participated by throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails, and burning tires to cloud the air while others attempt to break through the security fence or fire live rounds at Israeli soldiers. Also, nearly 10,000 acres of Israeli agricultural and protected nature lands have been destroyed by Gazans who have flown incendiary kites and balloons into Israel as part arson terrorism.
The IDF reported that more than 100 improvised bombs and grenades were thrown by protesters on just one day this week at protests attended by 20,000 Gazans.
In an interview with Yediot Achronot on Thursday, Hamas leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar, said he an “eruption is inevitable” due to humanitarian conditions in Gaza. However, Israel and the United States have accused Hamas of misusing Israeli and international funding and aid, redirecting it to military use or withholding or refusing it in order to create a desperate situation among residents.
Both Israel and Egypt control the passageways between Gaza and the two countries, due to previous abuse of travel ways by Hamas to attain illegal arms or supplies for military infrastructure.
Early reports indicate that the IDF believes that Hamas is preparing for war, and has increased its military readiness significantly in recent weeks.