Published: Tue, November 14, 2017
World | By Paul Elliott

IDF Deploys Iron Dome Amid Threat From Palestinian Islamic Jihad Terror Group

IDF Deploys Iron Dome Amid Threat From Palestinian Islamic Jihad Terror Group

Ten PIJ operatives, including two senior commanders, were killed during Israel's operation to destroy the tunnel. However, despite Hamas' inflammatory rhetoric against Israel, the movement has not officially claimed responsibility for any military action from Gaza against Israel since the 2014 war.

We are aware of ongoing efforts by the Palestine Islamic Jihad against Israel. The IDF wants to prepare a quick response in the event that the Islamic Jihad decides to act and also to enable the work on the barrier to continue.

On Saturday, the head of the Israeli military authority in the occupied Palestinian territories, Major General Yoav Mordechai, said: "We are aware of the plot that the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group plans against Israel... they are playing with fire at the expense of all of Gaza's residents". He addressed by name the terror group's leader, Ramadan Shalah, and his deputy, Ziad Nakhaleh, who run the Gaza-based group from Damascus, and said they would be "held responsible" should Islamic Jihad attack Israel.

According to Palestinian media, Hamas encouraged Islamic Jihad to abstain from retaliating both in order to prevent further escalation with Israel and to prevent the reconciliation talks it has been conducting with the Palestinian Authority from falling apart.

More than a dozen militants were killed in the collapse and the IDF later revealed it is holding the bodies of five, likely to use as bargaining chips in negotiations over the release of Israeli captives and fallen IDF soldiers. The destruction from three Israeli offensives since 2008, including damage to the enclave's water, sanitation, energy, and medical facilities, coupled with slow reconstruction due to the blockade, led the United Nations to warn that Gaza could be "uninhabitable" by 2020.

He added that "the defense establishment is ready for any developments".

Haaretz reported that in the light of such developments and in preparation, the army deployed Iron Dome anti-missile batteries in the south immediately after tunnel's destruction.

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