Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel Defense Forces (IDF) had targeted and killed top Hamas officials Tuesday, following an air-based attack between the Jewish nation and Palestinian militants.
"Yesterday and today, the IDF attacked hundreds of Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorist targets in the Gaza Strip," Netanyahu said in a statement to reporters. "We have eliminated dozens of terrorists, including senior commanders."
One of the top leaders killed in Israel’s strikes Tuesday was Fathi Faik Sharir, commander of the Hamas anti-tank missile unit, IDF announced earlier in the day.
Hamas had launched over 200 rockets and mortar shells from the Gaza strip between the hours of 6 p.m. Monday and 6 a.m. Tuesday.
Israel responded with airstrikes and targeted a 13-story building that housed a top command center for Hamas.
The militant group retaliated by sending an additional 130 rocket attacks into Israel Tuesday evening.
Israel’s "Iron Dome" missile defense system successfully blocked the majority of the strikes that made it across Israel’s borders, but some buildings in the Israeli cities of Ashkelon and Ashdod were struck, reported the Times of Israel.
"Hamas and Islamic Jihad have paid and – I tell you here – will pay a very heavy price for their aggression," Netanyahu said Tuesday night. "I say here this evening – their blood is on their heads."