After Week of Escalation, Israel Limits Gaza Fishing Zone

Israel has reduced Gaza's fishing zone from 10 to 15 nautical miles after a week of escalation sparked by the unveiling of the Trump administration's peace plan in Washington, the Defense Ministry said Wednesday.

The move, which came into effect on Wednesday at 4 P.M. and is said to last "until further notice," comes after rockets and explosive-laden balloons were launched from the coastal enclave at southern Israel. The Israeli army has responded with airstrikes.

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Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj. Gen. Kamil said in a statement that the decision to limit Gaza's fishing zone "was taken after repeated terror activities were carried out from within the Strip against Israel's citizens over the past several weeks, which constitute a violation of Israeli sovereignty."

The statement added that Israel views "Hamas as responsible for everything that emanates from the Gaza Strip and the organization will be held accountable for the ramifications of the violence exercised against Israel's citizens."

Palestinian fishermen unload their catch from boats after an overnight night fishing trip in the Gaza seaport during windstorm, January 13, 2020.Hatem Moussa.AP

On Wednesday evening, the Israeli army said two mortar shells launched from the Strip toward Israel fell in an open area and caused no damage. 

Over the last week, at least 13 rockets and mortar shells were fired from the Gaza Strip at Israeli territory on seven different occasions.

Three rockets were fired Tuesday overnight from Gaza into Israeli territory.