Patriot missile downs Hamas drone over Ashdod


Patriot missile battery destroys Hamas drone that entered Israeli airspace

•  8 yr-old boy fro Ashdod lightly wounded.
• Central Israel remain under Gaza rocket fire.
• Up to 4 rockets from Lebanon fired into northern Israel.

By Yehuda Shlezinger, Shlomi Diaz, Daniel Siryoti, Nitzi Yaakov, Lilach Shoval & Israel Hayom Staff


A Hamas unmanned aerial drone was shot down by a Patriot missile battery on Monday morning over the coastal city of Ashdod.

An Iron Dome battery launches an interceptor in Ashdod, Sunday – Photo: Or Mani

The drone took off from the Gaza Strip and flew north before being intercepted. During the incident, sirens sounded in Ashkelon and Ashdod.

After the drone was shot down, the Israeli Navy conducted searches in the waters off of Ashdod for drone remnants.

Hamas took responsibility for the drone launch, claiming it had sent a number of drones inside Israel to carry out “special missions.”

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon said the interception of the drone was proof of the IDF’s high level of readiness.

“When Hamas’ leadership comes out of hiding, they will discover the extent of the destruction that we have caused their organization, and will regret having engaged Israel in this round of fighting,” Ya’alon said.

Later on Monday morning, four rockets were fired at Ashdod. Two of the rockets hit the city and an eight-year-old boy was lightly wounded, apparently by shrapnel. The Iron Dome intercepted the other two rockets.

Rockets were also fired at Gan Yavne and Kiryat Malachi on Monday morning, as well as other communities near the Gaza border. Some were intercepted by the Iron Dome, while others hit open areas. No injuries or damage were reported.

A week into Operation Protective Edge, rocket warning sirens have become part of the daily routine for residents of central Israel. After a quiet morning on Sunday, Tel Aviv residents had to again run for cover when sirens sounded around 4:30 p.m. Numerous explosions were heard as the Iron Dome intercepted a volley of rockets fired by Hamas terrorists in Gaza.

Earlier on Sunday, a volley of at least four rockets was intercepted in the Rishon Lezion area, southeast of Tel Aviv. Shrapnel from one of the interceptions fell on the roof of a building in the western part of Rishon Lezion.

Northern Israel was also struck by rocket fire on Sunday. On Sunday night, a rocket fired from Syria exploded in an open area in the Golan Heights. No injuries or damage were reported. The IDF responded with artillery fire on a Syrian military positions, with “hits confirmed,” the IDF said.

Also on Sunday night, rocket sirens sounded in the northern Israeli towns of Nahariya, Shlomi and Maalot. Up to four rockets fired from Lebanon hit open areas in the western Galilee region. The IDF responded with strikes on the source of the fire.

On Sunday afternoon, rocket sirens sounded in the Haifa region. One rocket exploded in an open area south of Haifa. A police official said the source of the rocket fire — either Gaza or Lebanon — was still being looked into.

On Sunday evening, rocket sirens sounded in the Jerusalem, Beit Shemesh and Mateh Yehuda areas.

An eighth Iron Dome battery was put into operation on Sunday. The IDF is also preparing for the possible deployment of a ninth Iron Dome battery in the coming days.

Since the start of Operation Protective Edge, more than 200 rockets have been intercepted by Iron Dome.


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