Israeli authorities have declared an emergency situation near the Gaza border on Tuesday, November 12, following retaliatory attacks after the assassination of a Palestinian militant commander. All train services were reportedly suspended in the area.
Multiple rocket barrages have been fired from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel throughout the morning (local time) of Tuesday. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) killed Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) Al-Quds Brigade commander Bahaa Abu Al-Ata and his wife in an airstrike during the early morning hours on Tuesday. The PIJ and other Palestinian groups announced that they would retaliate. Schools in Gaza and southern Israel have been closed on Tuesday as cross-border strikes are expected throughout the day. Residents in southern Israel have also been advised to seek shelter and IDF personnel have been placed on high alert.
As of 07:00, rocket alarms have sounded in Ashdod, Beit Elazari, Ashkelon, Zikim, Karmia, and the Gaza Strip. The Israeli Iron Dome missile defense system has reportedly intercepted multiple projectiles across the southern border region. While some rockets have impacted in some areas, no casualties have been confirmed from the attacks.
Retaliatory rocket and cross-border attacks by PIJ and other militant organizations are likely to continue over the coming hours. Further IDF operations along the border and in the Gaza Strip are also possible.
The IDF said that Al-Ata was targeted by a precision strike at his residence in the Shejaiyah area of Gaza. According to the IDF, Al-Ata was imminently planning to launch an attack against Israeli citizens and soldiers. Al-Ata has been accused of organizing hundreds of attacks in Israel and developing the rocket capabilities of the PIJ in the Gaza Strip.
Individuals in Israel and the Palestinian Territories are advised to monitor developments to the situation and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments. Seek immediate shelter in the event of a rocket attack.
Some Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and areas near the Israeli-Lebanese, Israeli-Syrian, and Israeli-Egyptian borders.
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