Salvos of missiles fell on southern Israel Jan. 9 and Israeli aircraft hit a location in the north of Gaza Strip in response. Al-Quds Brigades, military wing of Islamic Jihad, claimed responsibility for the new missile strikes, saying they were “in retaliation for US President George W. Bush’s visit to the region due later today.” The National Resistance Brigades, the military wing of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, also claimed a rocket strike on an Israeli military position in the eastern Gaza Strip. Al-Nasser Salah-Eddine, military arm of the Popular Resistance Committees in Palestine, said in a statement one of its fighters was killed in an Israeli air strike that targeted a group of its militants near Beit Lahia in the northern Strip. The Israeli Army announced it was blocking all checkpoints around the strip and the West Bank as a security precaution ahead of Bush’s visit. In a statement, Hamas said Bush’s visit it “would be part of international schemes against the Palestinian cause.” (KUNA, Jan. 8)
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