Two rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip toward the Tel-Aviv area on Thursday, setting off red alert sirens, the IDF confirmed.
According to reports, two missiles were launched from Gaza and both landed in open areas. There were no immediate report of casualties or damage, though several people were treated for shock.
The IDF said that the Iron Dome missile defense system was activated but there were no interceptions. Initial reports suggested that a rocket was intercepted but that turned out to be false.
Prime Minister and Defense Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, rushed to hold emergency security consultations at the Defense Ministry headquarters in Tel Aviv tonight.
The Palestinian Islamic Jihad group in Gaza and Hamas both denied being responsible for the launch.
The Hamas-run “interior ministry” in Gaza vowed on Thursday night that it would take action against those responsible for the rocket fire, Channel 13 News reported.
“The rocket fire was carried out without the consent of the Palestinian factions. The security forces in the Gaza Strip will take measures against those who violated the national consensus,” said the ministry, according to the report.
The Hamas military wing added that the rockets were fired during a meeting between Hamas leaders and the Egyptian delegation in an attempt to agree on a truce with Israel.
The Egyptian delegation that came to Gaza to promote the truce between Israel and Hamas left the Gaza Strip at Israel’s request, but continues to hold intensive talks with the parties in order to try to prevent further escalation.
It was the first time that the incoming rocket sirens were activated in central Israel since Operation Protective Edge in 2014.
Updated at 6:34 p.m.