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Israeli-Palestinian fighting in Gaza

Qassam rocket hits house in southern Israel

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A Palestinian firefighter inspects the rubble of a food store hit by an Israeli tank shell in the Rafah refugee camp, southern Gaza.

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RAFAH, Gaza (CNN) -- A Qassam rocket, believed to have been launched by Palestinians in Gaza, landed on the roof of a building in southern Israel Sunday morning, Israeli police said. One woman suffered minor smoke inhalation.

Part of the rocket flew into the building in Sderot about 7:30 a.m. (12:30 a.m. ET), and ignited some cartons inside, Israeli police said. The Palestinian-built Qassam rockets have a range of six to 10 kilometers. (Rocket details)

The rocket attack happened hours after a gun battle in Rafah, Gaza, late Saturday, which killed five Palestinians and one Israeli soldier and wounded more than 100 other people, according to Palestinian medical sources and the Israel Defense Forces.

The shooting occurred late in the day as at least 50 tanks, bulldozers and armored vehicles, supported by two Apache helicopters, entered a neighborhood in the Rafah refugee camp, Palestinian witnesses said.

An Israeli military source said the operation was part of a move "to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure."

The source said he was aware of four Palestinian gunmen who were struck.

An Israel Defense Forces spokesman said two tunnels used to smuggle weapons into Gaza from Egypt were destroyed. The spokesman said the IDF also found stores of ammunition, and vests with hand grenades.

One of the tunnels ran 30 meters [99 feet] deep under the Egyptian border with Rafah, the IDF spokesman said. Hamas used the tunnels to smuggle ammunition and weapons into Gaza, the IDF said.

Palestinian security sources said the IDF blew up three houses and arrested three brothers. The IDF spokesman said one of the homes demolished belonged to the head of Hamas in Rafah.

Hamas, a Palestinian Islamic fundamentalist organization, has been labeled a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department. The group's military wing, Izzedine al Qassam, has admitted responsibility for terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians as well as attacks against the Israeli military.

The IDF spokesman said Israeli soldiers faced stiff resistance from antitank rockets, hand grenades and gunfire. The soldiers left the Rafah area after the operation ended early Sunday, he said.

Ten tunnels used to smuggle weapons have been uncovered and destroyed under the Egyptian border with Rafah this year, the IDF said.


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