Israel shoots down incoming rocket with Iron Dome

Police in Eilat confirm no damage or casualties caused; incident marks first time Iron Dome system intercepts rocket over the southern resort city.

An Iron Dome anti-missile system in Haifa.

An Iron Dome anti-missile system in Haifa. Photo by Rami Shlush

SOURCE

An Iron Dome anti-missile battery intercepted a rocket targeting Eilat shortly after 1:00 A.M. on Tuesday. The incident marks the first time the Iron Dome system has intercepted a rocket over the southern resort city, and comes two days after Egyptian reports of an Israeli drone strike which killed five militants at a rocket-launching site in northern Sinai.

The apparent attack comes at the height of the tourist season.

Warning sirens were heard in Eilat after 1:00 A.M., and residents reported hearing two explosions thereafter. Israel Police in Eilat confirmed that the Iron Dome system successfully intercepted the incoming rocket, and that no damage or casualties were caused in the city.

Last week, Eilat’s airport was closed by order of the military, apparently due to security threats in the neighboring Sinai Peninsula. Following the order, the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement that “civilian airports are managed in coordination with the Israel Air Force and Israel Airports Authority, in accordance with security assessments.”

On Sunday, Egyptian security officials said five suspected Islamic militants were killed and a rocket launcher was destroyed in a drone strike in the northern Sinai Peninsula.

Residents heard a large explosion Friday in the region near the border with Israel.

The two officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the press, said the attack was perpetrated by an Israeli drone, and was carried out in cooperation with Egyptian authorities.

An Israel Defense Forces spokesperson stated that the army was not responding to the reports.

In April, two rockets fired from the Sinai Peninsula hit Eilat. Police said no casualties or damage were reported.

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