Missiles intercept rockets
Missiles intercept rockets Noam Revkin Fenton/Flash90

A barrage of rockets was fired towards the city of Be’er Sheva and nearby areas just after 12:30 a.m. on Friday night.

Nine of the rockets exploded in open areas, and another rocket was intercepted by the Iron Dome system.

Hamas claimed responsibility for the firing on Be'er Sheva and said that it was carried out in response to the deaths of Palestinian Arabs in clashes in Judea and Samaria and to Israeli attacks in the northern Gaza Strip.

Rockets also were fired toward the city of Ashdod late on Friday night.

Three women were lightly injured on their way to a shelter following the sirens in Be'er Sheva. Magen David Adom paramedics evacuated them to Soroka Hospital.

In the Ashdod area, a man was treated by paramedics after suffering heart troubles. He did not require hospitalization, however.

Shortly after 2:00 a.m., another barrage of rockets targeted Ashkelon and the surrounding area.

Earlier, the IDF continued its intensive strikes on Hamas targets in Gaza. In one attack, IDF struck attacked the operational office of Hamas security chief Tawfiq Abu Naim, which had served as a military infrastructure to conduct the recent fighting against Israel.

In another attack, IDF fighter jets and aircraft attacked the homes of three Hamas terrorists which had served as terrorist infrastructure and weapons depots.

IDF fighter jets and aircraft also attacked three underground rocket launching sites used by Hamas in the northern Gaza Strip.

The IDF's Maglan Unit and IDF aircraft also eliminated a squad of terrorists and struck two Hamas anti-tank launchers in the Shuja'iyya neighborhood of Gaza City.

In addition, two anti-tank missile launchers in the same area were destroyed.

IDF aircraft also struck an Islamic Jihad anti-tank missile operative in Rafah.

IDF combat helicopters also attacked a number of land and sea observation posts associated with the Hamas terrorist organization in the southern Gaza Strip.

An IDF fighter jet and an aircraft attacked two apartments that were used by Hamas as terrorist weapons depots.

The attacked weapons depots were located in the homes of Hamas terrorists Muhammad Abu Shala and Fares Abu Shukran.

Meanwhile, the rocket barrages on southern Israel continued on Friday evening. Sirens sounded in Israeli communities near the Gaza border, in Sderot and in Ashkelon, shortly after 8:00 p.m. Later, sirens were also heard in the city of Be’er Sheva.

One rocket hit a home in a residential neighborhood in Sderot. The property sustained heavy damage, but no physical injuries were reported.

The IDF stated earlier that, from 7:00 a.m. Friday morning to 7:00 p.m. Friday evening, about 140 rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip to Israeli territory. About 30 rockets fell in the Gaza Strip.

Israel’s air defense fighters intercepted dozens of additional rockets.

On Thursday night, the IDF brought in 160 aircraft and dropped 450 bombs containing over 80 tons of explosives, hitting 150 terror targets in 35 minutes. Hamas' underground city was hit with enormous force, and the IDF collapsed the terror tunnel system, on the heads of the terrorists hiding in the tunnels.

During the attack, many kilometers of terror tunnels were destroyed. As of now, neither Israel nor Hamas is clear on the exact scope of the damage, but according to estimates, a large number of terrorists were buried in the sands beneath Gaza.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)