Putting a dent in a cease-fire that has lasted for seven years, at least one rocket fired from Lebanon landed in Israel on Sunday. The rocket did not cause any damage and the Israeli military responded with artillery fire.
“The Israeli military said that five rockets had been fired and one appeared to have landed in an open area near the Israeli border town of Kiryat Shimona. The military said it fired dozens of shells toward the source of the rocket fire.
“The attack came about two weeks after a Lebanese Army soldier fatally shot an Israeli soldier who was driving along the Israeli side of the border, after which Israeli forces fired back into Lebanon. The Israeli and Lebanese authorities and United Nations peacekeepers in southern Lebanon described the killing as the individual act of a rogue soldier and quickly worked to defuse tensions.”
Of course, the fear is that the attacks could disrupt the delicate balance in the area. Also, this comes while Israelis and Palestinians are trying to negotiate a peace deal.
In fact, just hours before the attack, Israel announced that it would release 26 long-time Palestinian prisoners. As the AP reminds us, this is a key part of what brought the two sides back to the negotiating table. Palestinians agreed to talk even with ongoing settlement construction, while Israel agreed to release 104 of the “longest-serving Palestinian prisoners it holds.”
Israel plans to release the prisoners — all of whom were convicted in connection to the killing of Israelis — later this week.