Israel rocket attack breaks two-month lull

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Palestinian militants have fired a rocket into southern Israel, shattering a two-month lull that prevailed along the Gaza-Israel border fence, in contrast to soaring tensions in the West Bank.

The Israeli military said aerial defence systems intercepted the projectile, which activated warning sirens in the southern coastal city of Ashkelon.

There were no reports of casualties and no Palestinian group claimed responsibility for the rocket fire.

Israel usually blames the militant Hamas group for any violence emanating from the coastal enclave it controls.

An Israeli military raid in the West Bank early on Friday, in which three Palestinian militants were killed and eight wounded, could have triggered the rocket attack from Gaza.

Also on Friday, an Israeli observation balloon crashed and fell in the northern Gaza Strip.

The Israeli military said it investigated the incident, and clarified the balloon was not downed by Palestinian militants.

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