Over 5 hours since Gaza rocket last fired at Israel

IDF strikes another 15 km of tunnels in the Strip * Projectile hits home in south, but no injuries * Military believes Palestinian faction responsible for Lebanon attack

  • A ball of fire explodes above buildings in Gaza City as Israel shells the Palestinian enclave, early on May 18, 2021, amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and Gaza-ruling Hamas terror group. (Mahmud Hams/AFP)
    A ball of fire explodes above buildings in Gaza City as Israel shells the Palestinian enclave, early on May 18, 2021, amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and Gaza-ruling Hamas terror group. (Mahmud Hams/AFP)
  • Rockets are launched by Palestinian terrorists in the southern Gaza Strip toward Israel, May 17, 2021. (Said Khatib/AFP)
    Rockets are launched by Palestinian terrorists in the southern Gaza Strip toward Israel, May 17, 2021. (Said Khatib/AFP)
  • A top view shows the remains of a six-story building which was destroyed by an early morning Israeli airstrike, in Gaza City, May 18, 2021, amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and the coastal enclave's Hamas rulers. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
    A top view shows the remains of a six-story building which was destroyed by an early morning Israeli airstrike, in Gaza City, May 18, 2021, amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and the coastal enclave’s Hamas rulers. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
  • An Israel Defense Forces artillerypiece fires toward the Gaza Strip on May 18, 2021, amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and the coastal enclave's Hamas rulers. (Gili Yaari/Flash90)
    An Israel Defense Forces artillerypiece fires toward the Gaza Strip on May 18, 2021, amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and the coastal enclave’s Hamas rulers. (Gili Yaari/Flash90)
  • A Muslim women hold posters and shout slogans during an anti-Israel protest in Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia, May 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Trisnadi)
    A Muslim women hold posters and shout slogans during an anti-Israel protest in Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia, May 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Trisnadi)

The Times of Israel is liveblogging Tuesday’s events as they happen. For a recap of Monday’s news, click here.

Egyptian intel delegation may visit Israel on Tuesday — report

A delegation of Egyptian intelligence official may visit Israel today, according to the Saudi-owned broadcaster Al Arabiya, amid international efforts to halt the ongoing fighting between the Israeli military and the Gaza-ruling Hamas terror group.

Over 5 hours since Gaza rocket fired at Israel amid ceasefire push

More than five hours have passed since Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip have fired rocket at Israel from the enclave, as international mediators attempt to broker a ceasefire between Hamas and Israel.

The most recent attack occurred at 6:15 a.m., when projectiles were fired toward the community of Ein Hashlosha near the Gaza border in the Eshkol region of southern Israel.

Israel, meanwhile, has not yet stopped conducting airstrikes, according to Palestinian media reports.

EU foreign policy chief speaks with Blinken about ending Gaza fighting

EU Foreign Minister Josep Borrell says he spoke with his American counterpart Antony Blinken about ending the fighting in Gaza between Israel and the Strip’s Hamas rulers.

They also discussed how to “reduce tensions” between Israel and the Palestinians, Borrell writes on Twitter.

He adds: “Looking beyond, we also need longer term initiatives to break the dynamics of conflict and revive the prospect of a peaceful future for all.”

Police arrest 2 more suspects over brutal assault on Arab driver in Bat Yam

Police announce the arrest of two more suspects over a brutal assault last week on Arab motorist by a Jewish mob in the coastal city of Bat Yam.

The two were arrested over the weekend and brought before a court last night, which approved extending their remand until Thursday, according to police.

Police say three people have so far been arrested over the attack — a minor from Holon and two men from Bat Yam.

IDF: Palestinian tried to shoot, throw explosive at troops in Hebron before being shot

The Israel Defense Forces says a Palestinian who tried to attack Israeli troops in the West Bank city of Hebron was armed with explosives, a makeshift Carlo-style submachine gun and a knife.

“The IDF soldiers spotted the terrorist who was approaching them and tried to shoot and throw an explosive toward them. The soldiers responded with fire and neutralized the terrorist,” a statement from the IDF says.

No Israeli soldiers were injured.

Hundreds in Indonesia protest against Israel outside US Embassy

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Pro-Palestinian protesters march to the heavily guarded US Embassy in Indonesia’s capital to demand an end to Israeli airstrikes in the Gaza Strip amid fighting between the Israel Defense Forces and the enclave’s Hamas rulers.

Waving Indonesian and Palestinian flags and signs that read “Free Palestine,” several hundred demonstrators gather along a major street in Jakarta that runs outside the embassy. More than 1,000 police are deployed around the compound, which is blocked off by concrete road separators.

Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim majority nation, does not have formal diplomatic relations with Israel and there is not an Israeli Embassy in the country.

One group of protesters, organized by the United Indonesian Muslim Student Action group, chants “God is Great” and “Freedom for Palestine” as they march. Their banners and placards slam the airstrikes in Gaza and denounce America’s staunch support of Israel.

Another group, organized by the Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions, holds a similar rally a few hundred meters (yards) from the embassy. They yell “Save Palestinians” as they march through downtown Jakarta to the United Nations mission.

Similar protests organized by union workers are held at the same time in other Indonesian cities, including in Surabaya, Bandung, Yogyakarta, Makassar and Riau.

Authorities warned protesters to maintain social distance during the demonstrations to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

The hostilities in Gaza, now in their ninth day, erupted last week after Hamas fired several rockets at Jerusalem amid escalating Israeli-Palestinian tensions over the city.

A Muslim women hold posters and shout slogans during an anti-Israel protest in Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia, May 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Trisnadi)

Israel to weigh reopening Kerem Shalom crossing with Gaza

Israel’s military and political leadership will hold discussions today to consider a reopening of the Kerem Shalom Crossing into the Gaza Strip, which has been closed since the start of the fighting last Monday.

In light of the closure, Gaza’s sole electrical plant has nearly run out of fuel and the Strip has seen major power cuts throughout the ongoing battle, which have also affected its water supply and sewage treatment.

Last night, Palestinian officials said they had received word that Israel would reopen the crossing as a humanitarian gesture.

Israel Defense Forces Spokesperson Hidai Zilberman initially dismissed the report this morning, telling reporters “there’s no opening and no Kerem Shalom.” Another military spokesperson later clarifies that no decision has yet been made on the matter, but that it is being considered.

Trucks passing through the Kerem Shalom crossing, the main passage point for goods entering the Gaza Strip from Israel. (Said Khatib/AFP)

Meretz MK urges government to reach ceasefire in Gaza

MK Tamar Zandberg of the left-wing Meretz party calls on the government to reach a ceasefire to immediately end the fighting in Gaza between the Israel Defense Forces and Hamas.

She says the hostilities, now in their ninth day, are “no different” from previous bouts of fighting in recent years that generally lasted for a few days.

“If we don’t change the approach, [the current round] also won’t be any different from those that follow it,” Zandberg writes on Twitter.

She says the fighting is causing the “death of innocents, destruction and despair on both sides” without changing anything and that there is no military solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Zandberg also says “peace is the thing that most scares” Prime Minister Netanyahu and right-wing politicians and accuses the government of “speaking with Hamas and branding Abu Mazen a terrorist,” referring to PA President Mahmoud Abbas.

Meretz MK Tamar Zandberg at a Knesset faction meeting on April 26, 2021. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

Two men charged over far-right assault on journalists in Tel Aviv

Prosecutors file charges at the Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court against two far-right rioters filmed assaulting journalists in southern Tel Aviv last week.

The suspects are named in the indictment as Yosef Peretz and Yosef Maatuf.

Among the charges filed against the two are assaulting a public servant, as the cameramen and reporter they attacked work for the Kan public broadcaster.

IDF reports attempted attack in Hebron; assailant ‘neutralized,’ no Israelis hurt

The Israel Defense Forces says a Palestinian assailant was “neutralized” during an attempted attack in the West Bank city of Hebron.

No Israelis were injured and the IDF says it is looking into the matter.

Israel said to acknowledge that strike on Gaza media tower fueled US discomfort

Army Radio quotes an unnamed Israeli source saying a strike on high-rise building in Gaza that housed the offices of The Associated Press and other media outlets — and that Israel maintains was being used by Hamas military intelligence — put the Jewish state in an uncomfortable spot vis-a-vis the United States.

The comment comes after US Secretary of State Antony Blinked said yesterday that he asked Israel for evidence that the Gaza-ruling Hamas was using the building, adding that he hasn’t seen any himself.

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