Israel Defense Forces (IDF) tanks fired on military positions belonging to Hamas in the Gaza Strip on Sunday morning, August 30. The attack was in response to the continued launch of incendiary balloons from the enclave, with at least 25 fires reportedly sparked by airborne incendiary devices in southern Israel on Saturday, August 29. There were no immediate reports of casualties following Sunday's attack.
Continued attacks on Israeli border communities are likely in the near term, as well as Israeli retaliatory strikes. Further escalation of the situation cannot be ruled out.
The incidents come amidst a period of rising tension between Hamas and Israel, as negotiations between the two sides have allegedly stalled. On August 8, a Hamas official reportedly stated that the group would resume their balloon bomb campaign in order to exercise pressure on the Israeli government, and threatened rocket fire into Israel should the situation continue. Hundreds of balloons have been launched into Israel in the past few weeks, with Israel launching airstrikes targeting Hamas infrastructure in response. Israeli authorities have warned that further attacks would draw an increasingly harsh response.
Those in the Gaza Strip and areas of Israel bordering the territory are advised to monitor developments and adhere to instructions issued by local authorities and their home governments.
Some Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to the Gaza Strip.
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