August 24, 2011
Gaza rocket lands in Egypt as border tension simmers
A woman was injured by a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip into the Egyptian town of Rafah on Wednesday, Egypt’s state news agency MENA reported, as tension simmered in the region after a spate of cross-border violence.
The woman was taken to hospital with light injuries, said a security source in the area.
Another source said it was the first time a rocket from Gaza had landed on a residential area and not in the desert, which was “raising concern among the security forces here”.
Egyptian security forces were searching the desert frontier with Gaza and Israel for militants who may be behind the killing of eight Israelis on Thursday along a road north of the Red Sea resort of Eilat, Egyptian officials said.
Five Egyptian border guards were killed last week as Israeli forces repelled the gunmen, causing the worst crisis in Egypt’s relations with Israel since the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak in February.
Israel said the militants had travelled from Gaza through the Egyptian Sinai, and accused Cairo of losing its grip on security in the border region, a charge that Egypt denied.
Israeli forces launched air strikes on Gaza shortly after the attacks north of Eilat. Israel said the leader of the faction responsible for the attacks was killed in the strikes.
Gaza militants responded by firing rockets into southern Israel and some rockets also landed in Egypt. Israel and Palestinian factions in Gaza agreed a ceasefire on Monday but it has failed to stop the violence.
Egyptian General Mohsen Fangary of the ruling army council was due to meet Prime Minister Essam Sharaf on Wednesday and they were likely to discuss the events in Sinai and relations with Israel, a cabinet source said.
Reporting by Marwa Awad; Writing by Tom Pfeiffer