19 March 2010
Terrorists in the Gaza Strip fired several Qassam rockets against Israel, killing one civilian. Israel’s Air Force retaliated on Friday by bombing smuggling tunnels on Gaza’s border with Egypt. One of three rockets that were fired into Israeli territory on Thursday smashed into a greenhouse of an agricultural community in the Israeli village Netiv Haasara, killing the 33-year-old Thai worker Manee Singueanphon. It was the first death since Israel's offensive against Hamas-ruled Gaza over a year ago.
The missile launch happened despite a ban put in place by Hamas. According to experts, it highlights the growing challenge to Hamas from more radical rivals, including al-Qaeda-linked groups.
The Quartet of Middle East mediators, which met in Moscow on Friday, condemned the rocket attack on Israel and called for calm. It also called for the immediate release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who has been held by Hamas in the Gaza Strip for nearly four years.
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