Israeli special forces flown south by helicopter as Gaza riots escalate
Israeli special forces were flown by helicopter on Monday afternoon, May 14, to the Israeli-Egyptian border region to thwart Palestinian plans to kidnap soldiers and civilians. Egypt also placed its Gaza border on high alert, after the IDF killed three armed Palestinians when they were caught planting an explosive device on the border fence at Rafah at the southern tip of the Gaza Strip on the Egyptian border.
The IDF forces guarding the Gaza border fence, ramped up to 12 battalions, continue to fend off spiraling Palestinian attempts to break through for terrorist attacks and attempts to snatch hostages. It is also feared that undiscovered Hamas terror tunnels may also deposit terrorists inside Israeli communities. For the first time in the eight-week Hamas rampage on the Gaza-Israeli border, an Israeli aircraft fired at an armed Hamas position near the Gaza town of Jebalia in reprisal for gunfire on Israeli troops.
As the day wore on, the masses rioting along the Israeli border swelled in number to around 40,000, concentrated in 12 rallying points at the fence. Gangs are throwing explosive devices and burning containers at the Israeli troops. In early afternoon, the Palestinians reported 44 dead from Israeli gunfire and hundreds injured. Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gady Eisenkot is in constant touch with the field commanders.