Israel launches airstrikes after attacks from Gaza

Palestinian militants from Gaza fired a barrage of rockets and mortar shells into Israeli territory on Monday, causing no casualties but some property damage, after an Israeli airstrike wounded at least 10 Palestinians in southern Gaza on Sunday.

Israeli warplanes responded immediately, striking a number of rocket-launching squads as they fired towards Israel, according to the military, and hitting several facilities belonging to Hamas, the Islamic group that controls Gaza, which the military said were being used to store weapons.

Ashraf al-Qedra, health ministry spokesman in Gaza, said five Palestinians were injured in Monday's strikes, one of them seriously.

The latest flare-up began with the missile strike on Sunday against two men that Israel said were members of jihadist groups involved in terrorist activity against Israel. Some Palestinian news media identified the two men as members of radical Salafist groups. Gaza officials said they were critically wounded, and at least eight passers-by were injured.

A spokeswoman for the Israeli military said up to 30 mortar shells had fallen inside Israel on Monday morning, and the military said a number of rockets also struck Israeli territory near the Gaza border.

The armed wings of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, a smaller militant group, claimed responsibility for the rocket and mortar fire, saying that they were aiming at the Israeli military bases near the border.

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