IDF hits Gaza terrorists launching 'balloon bombs'

Israeli aircraft hit vehicle used by Gaza terrorists, fires warning shots towards terror cell preparing incendiary balloons for launch.

David Rosenberg ,

Rioters in Gaza near Israeli fence
Rioters in Gaza near Israeli fence
Abed Rahim Khatib/ Flash90

Israeli aircraft opened fire on a terrorist position in the Gaza Strip Friday afternoon, after a terror cell was spotted launching incendiary balloons and kites into Israeli territory.

According to an Israeli military spokesperson, IDF aircraft fired warning shots towards the terrorists to deter them from launching the incendiary balloons.

The aircraft also fired a nearby vehicle suspected of being used by the terrorists.

“A short while ago, the IDF identified a group of Palestinians preparing explosive balloons to be sent from the southern Gaza Strip into Israel,” the IDF spokesperson said.

“In response, an IDF aircraft fired warning shots towards the group and towards a nearby vehicle. The IDF views the use of incendiary balloons and kites with great severity and will operate to prevent their use.”

No reports regarding casualties from the IDF fire on the vehicle have been released at this time.

In recent weeks, Gaza-based terrorists have used ‘terror kites’ and ‘balloon bombs’ to drop incendiary and explosive devices into Israeli territory.

Earlier on Friday, an incendiary balloon launched from the Gaza Strip landed in the Shaar Hanegev Regional Council inside of Israeli territory. Police sappers defused the incendiary device. No injuries were reported.

Yesterday, a group calling itself the 'kite-builder's unit' vowed to launch 5,000 kites and helium balloons attached to incendiary devices at Israel during today's protests at the Gaza border. The threat was made in honor of Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim holiday which marks the end of the month of Ramadan, which is celebrated today.

Over 25,000 dunams (6,177.6 acres) of Israeli land - mostly forests and agricultural fields - have been scorched by the terror kites in recent months, while the perpetrators have gone unpunished. Extensive damage has been caused to Israeli crops, irrigation systems, wildlife, and forests.