Israeli airstrikes wound 10 in GazaMarch 20th, 2010 - 5:20 am ICT by IANS
Gaza, March 20 (DPA) Israeli F16 warplanes Friday night carried out two successive airstrikes on southern Gaza Strip, wounding at least 10 people, in response to earlier rocket attacks on southern Israel, witnesses and medics said.
The witnesses said Israeli warplanes targeted the inoperative Gaza airport east of the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah. After a short while, Israeli warplanes struck two smuggling tunnels under the Gaza Strip-Egypt borders.
Medics at Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah town said that 10 Palestinians were injured in the second airstrike that targeted the two tunnels. Three were seriously injured, they said.
Gaza airport was built in 1999 with German and Spanish donations as well as loans from Arab Bank in Egypt. However, the airport became inoperative after the Palestinian Intifada, or Uprising, erupted against Israel in September 2000.
Since then, Israeli warplanes and tanks destroyed most of the airport buildings as well as the runway, mainly during last winter’s 22-day military offensive by Israel against the Gaza Strip.
Earlier on Friday in the predawn hours, Israeli planes carried out six successive airstrikes on different targets in the Gaza Strip, including a metal workshop in Gaza City and smuggling tunnels in southern Gaza Strip.
The Palestinians have dug thousands of tunnels under the borders between Gaza Strip and Egypt, used for smuggling after Israel tightened the blockade on the Gaza Strip.
The blockade was tightened after Hamas seized control of the impoverished enclave by force in June 2007 and routed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
The intensive Israeli airstrikes on the enclave early Friday and Friday night came after radical pro-Al Qaeda militants fired a rocket at southern Israel Thursday, which killed a Thai worker near the Israeli city of Ashkelon.
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