The Israeli air force carried out four strikes on targets in the Gaza Strip hours after a cross-border rocket landed in the city of Ashdod May 26. The planes targeted training camps belonging to the Islamic Jihad in Rafah, Khan Yunis and Gaza City. There were no immediate reports of casualties. Earlier, the Qassam Brigades, military wing of Hamas, confirmed they had fired five experimental rockets into the sea, but said one had landed accidentally in the southern Israeli city. Israel said it struck "four terror infrastructures in the southern Gaza Strip" in response to the rocket fire. The rocket was the third fired from Gaza since the ceasefire ending Israel's 50-day war on Gaza last summer. Two mortar bombs were also fired at Israel since September, according to the Shin Bet security agency. The air-strikes were the third since the end of the 2014 conflict. (Al Jazeera, May 27)
An Amnesty International report released May 26 charges that Hamas committed war crimes against Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip during last year's Operation Protective Edge. "Hamas forces carried out a brutal campaign of abductions, torture and unlawful killings against Palestinians accused of 'collaborating' with Israel and others during Israel's military offensive against Gaza," the report said. Among the at least 23 extrajudicial executions identified by Amnesty were supporters of the rival Fatah movement. Many more were injusly arrested. "The de facto Hamas administration granted its security forces free rein to carry out horrific abuses including against people in its custody. These spine-chilling actions, some of which amount to war crimes, were designed to exact revenge and spread fear across the Gaza Strip," Amnesty said. (Reuters, AI)
An Amnesty report in March accused Palestinian armed groups of killing civilians on both sides in attacks during the conflict, amounting to war crimes. A November 2014 report accused Israel of targeting Palestinian homes during Operation Protective Edge, with 16,245 homes destroyed—many with the residents inside, with over 100 killed in this way. A follow-up report accused Israel of intentionally destroying public buildings in the aerial campaign.