Overview of situation in the South of Israel as of 1 PM November 20, 2012

Please see an overview of the situation in the south of Israel as of 1:00 p.m. on November 20, 2012:

  • As of November 20, 2012, the number of rockets and mortars fired at Israeli civilians from Gaza for 2012 stood at more than 2,000. More than three million Israelis live within range of rocket and mortar attacks.
  • As of 1:00 p.m. today, more than 60 rockets were fired at Israel on November 20, with more than 20 interceptions by the Iron Dome.
  • More than 30 rockets were shot at Beersheba targeting the largest city in southern Israel. One of the rockets hit a bus and injuring a civilian. At least three grads landed in the city causing shrapnel damage.
  • More than 1,100 rockets fired into Israel from Gaza since the start of the operation last week. More than 350 have thus far been intercepted by the Iron Dome system.
  • On Nov. 19, 2012, Gaza terrorists fired 135 rockets into Israeli towns and cities, including 42 that were intercepted by the Iron Dome.
  • The area closest to the Gaza border sees the most rocket attacks and all 90 schools and 61 kindergartens remain closed within 40km of the Palestinian coastal enclave.
  • Civil defense officials have instructed all residents within this area to remain within a maximum 15 seconds from a bomb shelter or protected area – the amount of time residents have to reach shelter once radar detects incoming projectiles and triggers air raid sirens. All non-essential work in the 7km-range of rocket fire has also been canceled.
  • Nineteen hospitals throughout Israel are located in the range of Hamas’s rockets. MDA (Israeli Red Cross) have dealt with more than 252 casualties since the beginning of Operation Pillar of Defense, including three killed by a rocket attack in Kiryat Malachi.
  • Via the Kerem Shalom crossing, Israel’s Civil Administration transferred 24 trucks of food and medical supplies to Gaza on November 20. Hamas fired rockets at the crossing and prevented an additional 98 truck from entering the strip. The IDF had to close Kerem Shalom to protect the personnel manning the site and soldiers from the rockets.
  • Nine leading Israeli ministers convened yesterday to discuss proposals for a ceasefire as the international community seeks to advance truce efforts.
  • U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will arrive in Israel later today to meet with Israeli leaders to discuss ceasefire efforts. An Israeli official said to local media Israel will not launch a ground operation during the secretary’s visit.
  • Despite diplomatic efforts, Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad continue to arm themselves via terror networks outside Gaza:

    • Deputy leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad Ziad Nakhleh confirmed that rockets fired by Hamas to Israeli towns are of Iranian origin.
    • Daoud Shihad, spokesman for Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip: “Palestinian resistance is in good shape and has many rockets. Tel Aviv is in danger…Iran has always supported the Palestinian resistance.”
    • Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah called on Arab world to send weapons to Gaza instead of humanitarian and medical aid.

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