Thu, 30 Jun 2022

JERUSALEM, June 19 (Xinhua) -- Israel on Sunday suspended entry permit expansion for Palestinian workers from the Gaza Strip after militants fired rockets from the enclave on Saturday.

"Following a situation assessment, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz decided to freeze the increase of permits," the minister's office said in a statement, citing as the reason a rocket fired early on Saturday from Gaza towards southern Israel.

Israel announced on Thursday an extra 2,000 permits would be issued to Palestinians from the coastal enclave which has been under an Israeli and Egyptian blockade since 2007, allowing them to work in Israel and the occupied West Bank. The order could have come into effect on Sunday.

Currently, about 12,000 people from Gaza's 2.1 million population are allowed to travel outside the enclave for working and trade purposes, according to official Israeli figures.

After a two-month lull in cross-border fire, the Israeli military said Saturday its warplanes hit Hamas military sites in Gaza hours after Israel's Iron Dome aerial defense system intercepted a rocket fired from the enclave at the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon.

No Palestinian group claimed for the rocket and there were no reports of damage or injuries.

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