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Response to Rockets: Gaza Fishing Zone Halved

Senior defense source: Israel will not allow Hamas to "drizzle" rockets again.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 3/21/2013, 10:47 PM

Moshe Yaalon
Moshe Yaalon
Reuters

Israel has responded to the firing of four rockets at Sderot Thursday by cutting the permitted fishing zone for Gaza fishermen in half, from six miles to three miles offshore. This brings the fishing zone back to its size before Operation Pillar of Defense.

"We will not allow Hamas to go back to the previous situation of a 'rocket drizzle,' and the entire defense establishment is in agreement on this matter," a senior defense force in southern command told Arutz Sheva.

"Hamas understands this," he added. "Its senior officials understand that they will be the first to pay a price for renewing the fire."

Israel does not plan to fire back at Gaza, because it assumes that the rocket fire Thursday was carried out without Hamas's knowledge. A Salafist group, the Majles Shura al-Mujahedin, claimed responsibility for the attack.

The curtailment of the fishing zone was approved by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon.

In addition, the Defense Minister gave orders stopping the passage of all merchandise at the Kerem Shalom terminal between Gaza and Israel. The Erez Crossing will serve only for humanitarian purposes.