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Rockets in Northern Israel and Southern Lebanon

Sunday morning wave of Katyushas hits northern Israel, causing injuries, sending tens of thousands into shelters. The IDF hit targets in Lebanon, including a house in terrorist-stronghold Kafr Kana.
By Hillel Fendel
First Publish: 7/30/2006, 1:52 PM / Last Update: 7/30/2006, 9:30 AM

Close to 100 Katyusha rockets were fired at northern Israel through mid-afternoon on Sunday, wounding several people seriously and moderately - including a reporter for Haaretz. Targeted towns and cities included Hatzor, Nahariya, Kiryat Shmonah, and more.

Some 25 Hizbullah-fired Katyusha rockets smashed into northern Israel's Kiryat Shmonah and vicinity early Sunday morning, hitting at least one building. Seven rockets hit Acco, wounding ten people, while in Nahariya, a Magen David Adom medical team evacuated two wounded, including one who was hit by shrapnel. More rockets were fired at Haifa, Kfar Blum and elsewhere.

Over the course of the Sabbath, close to 100 Katyushas landed in Tzfat, Carmiel, Acco, Nahariya, Maalot, Tiberias, Kiryat Shmonah and elsewhere. Though tens of thousands of people were forced to spend yet another Sabbath in their shelters, only one person was injured by the rockets. Heavy damage was caused to medical facility in Acco.

Tens of other thousands of people have left their homes for central and southern Israel.

The official count of Katyusha rockets that have hit Israel in the past 19 days is nearing 1,800. Of these, close to a quarter fell, as they were intended, in populated areas, killing 19 civilians. In addition, nearly 1,100 people have been wounded, including 66 in critical or "moderate" condition, and 43 people are still hospitalized.

On Friday, for the first time, Hizbullah fired a much higher-quality Katyusha, known as a Fajr-5. The Fajr is a long-range missile that can reach as far as Netanya, with a particularly heavy explosive payload of 100 kilograms. Five of them landed as far south as the Beit She'an-Afula area; no one was hurt. The IDF announced shortly afterwards that Air Force planes succeeded in destroying the launcher that fired the missiles.

In Kafr Kana, Lebanon, a three-story building bombed by the IDF was totally destroyed, killing at least 50 people, many of whom were in the shelter below. Israel has repeatedly warned civilians in the area to leave, but Hizbullah terrorists, who used them as "human shields," prevented them from doing so.

A senior Israel Air Force officer said that the army has been bombing the area for three days because of dozens of Katyushas fired from the village. Some of the Katyushas hit an Israeli hospital.