may strike at ship allegedly carrying Iranian rockets to Gaza –
has reportedly vowed to destroy rockets and other weapons being sent
to Gaza by Iran. Tel Aviv issued this threat despite a recent
ceasefire following eight days of bitter conflict between Gaza and
spy satellites spotted a cargo vessel in the Iranian port of Bandar
Abbas that was allegedly Gaza-bound and carrying arms, the Sunday
of the ceasefire agreement, we will attack and destroy any shipment
of arms to Gaza once we have spotted it,” an
Israeli defense official told the newspaper.
vessel reportedly began its voyage last week just as Israel and Hamas
agreed to a ceasefire ending eight days of violence in Gaza, in which
over 150 Palestinians died. The cargo is believed to include Fajr-5
rockets, similar to those used by Hamas in the conflict, and Shahab-3
ship is set to travel through the Red Sea, Sudan and
Egypt, according to the Sunday Times report. The newspaper also cited
Israeli officials speculating that Iran could be moving longer-range
ballistic missiles into Sudan, which could be aimed at Israel from
the African country.
Sunday Times’ report comes a day after the Hamas leadership
announced they aren’t ready to stop arming themselves, despite the
recently-agreed truce and ceasefire.
have no choice but to continue to bring in weapons by all possible
Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar told reporters, adding that he expected
Tehran would "increase
its military and financial support to Hamas."
on Wednesday, exiled Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal thanked
Shia-majority Iran for what he described as arms and funding.
Saturday, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad expressed support for
Gaza in the bloody conflict, praising what he called
and perseverance" against
Israel, which he said must now "bow" to
Palestinian rights, IRNA news agency reported.
eight-day Israeli assault on Gaza killed 168 Palestinians, mostly
civilians. It also led to $300
economic damage, a Palestinian Chamber of Commerce report said.
fired Fajr-5 rockets against Israel, an unsettling revelation for the
Israeli public. The country was last targeted by the 3-meter-long
missiles during its 2006 war with Lebanon, and was expecting
smaller-range rockets to be used in the recent conflict.
Farj-5 arsenal was able to strike
Tel Aviv and Jerusalem,
cities that were not attacked during the previous escalation of
violence between Israel and Gaza in 2008. The IDF was forced to
rapidly deploy an additional battery of its Iron Dome air defense
system to counter the threat.