After deadly Gaza protests, rockets hit southern Israel

"The IDF holds Hamas responsible for everything that transpires in and emanates from the Gaza Strip and it will bear the consequences for the terror it inflicts upon Israeli civilians", the military said in a statement.

Palestinian media reported that Israeli forces had killed five Palestinians and injured 232 others during Friday's anti-occupation demonstrations near the Gaza fence.

"The rockets that were launched against Israel. we know that the orders, incentives were given from Damascus with the clear involvement of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards' Quds Force", army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus said on Saturday, referring to Iran' foreign operations unit. The fuel, funded by Qatar, was meant to alleviate the humanitarian conditions in Gaza and reduce the tensions that contribute to the border protests.

The Israeli military has accused Syria and Iran of responsibility in a night-long barrage of rocket attacks out of the Gaza Strip and has threatened to strike Iranian targets in Syria in response.

A Hamas official said that following the escalation that Egypt was again seeking to negotiate a return to calm.

The coastal strip has been under a crippling siege since 2007 and witnessed three wars since 2008.

Israeli medics said seven civilians were being treated for shock.

The armed wing of Islamic Jihad, the second largest militant group in Gaza, threatened to continue the rocket fire on Saturday.

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Israel has struck Syria dozens of times in recent years, saying it is preventing Iran from supplying advanced weapons to enemies of the Jewish state.

More than 200 Palestinians have so far been killed and over 20,000 others wounded by Israeli troops in the protests, according to the latest figures released by the Gaza Health Ministry.

"More rockets from Gaza into Israel".

Organizers of the weekly protests at the Gaza-Israel border called on Gaza residents to demonstrate en masse on Friday under the slogan "Gaza will not surrender".

The majority have died during protests, while smaller numbers have been killed by airstrikes and tank fire.

Earlier in the week, Israel's defense minister, Avigdor Liberman, vowed to step up the country's response to these ongoing protests.

Also on Friday, a Palestinian man was killed by Israeli soldiers in the occupied West Bank.

Reports Friday suggested a deal had been reached that would see the protests end in exchange for an easing of the blockade.

  • Sonia Alvarado