Israeli Knesset Evacuated Due to Missile Barrage after Hamas Delivers Ultimatum

The Israeli Knesset has been evacuated after a rocket barrage struck Beit Shemesh and Jerusalem an hour after receiving an ultimatum from Hamas.

According to the ultimatum, Israel must withdraw security personnel from Al-Aqsa and Sheikh Jarrah by 6 pm Monday.

Several explosions were reported across Israel shortly after air raid sirens blared an hour after the ultimatum expired without the conditions being met. 

A TV feed from the Knesset showed Knesset members ducking for cover and evacuating while in session.

“Following the previous report regarding the sirens which sounded in the cities of Beit Shemesh and Jerusalem, seven rockets were fired from the  Gaza Strip at Israeli territory. One of the rockets was intercepted by the Iron Dome Aerial Defense System” said the Israeli army.

There were also reports from the Israeli Army that anti-tank missiles have been fired from the Gaza border into the Israeli side. 

Several towns in Israel were put on “Red Alert” while bomb shelters have been opened to the public. 

There were no reported deaths or injuries but a car was hit with a missile. 

Hamas’ military wing spokesman Abu Obeida said the attack was a response to Israel’s aggression and threatened more attacks if Israeli forces do not vacate the Al-Aqsa compound and if Palestinian families are evicted from Sheikh Jarrah.

“This is a message the enemy has to understand well,” said Obeida. 

Abu Hamza, the spokesperson of the military wing of Palestinian Islamic Jihad also released a warning message: “Watch 9 pm.”

The Israeli army reported that it has started conducting retaliatory airstrikes against Hamas targets in the Gaza strip in response to the barrage. 

“We have started, and I repeat started, to attack military targets in Gaza,” said Israeli army spokesman Jonathan Conricus.

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