The Israel army says it struck “subterranean Hamas terror facilities” in Gaza in response to a rocket fired at Israel on Sunday evening, with the Palestinian group calling it a “clear message of escalation”.
The Israeli army said early on Monday its fighter jets carried out the attack. “We hold Hamas responsible for all activity emanating from Gaza,” it said in a tweet.
Hours earlier, the army said some families watching a film at a drive-in theatre in southern Israel had to run to bomb shelters when “terrorists from Gaza fired a rocket at Israel”.
No casualties were reported.
Hamas on Monday said it would not allow Gaza to be “a theatre for these crises”.
“[Our] policies in dealing with the enemy will remain fully consistent with the continuing struggle and resistance of our people,” it said in a statement.
The Israeli army said the rocket, which was intercepted by its Iron Dome system, was the first to be fired from the Palestinian coastal enclave since the first week of July.
Israel captured Gaza from Egypt in the 1967 War, but unilaterally pulled its army out and evacuated its settlements in the Strip in 2005.
Israel, however, continues to control Gaza’s borders, along with Egypt, and frequently closes crossings in response to rocket fire and other violence along the border.
The last major conflict between Israel and the Hamas movement, which de facto controls the coastal enclave, was in 2014.
Since then, violence flares from time to time, despite an informal Egyptian-brokered Hamas-Israel truce.
A ball of fire is seen following an Israeli air raid on Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip [Said Khatib/AFP]
Al Jazeera and news agencies