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Israeli strikes hit Gaza militant bases after mortar fire: Hamas

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Gaza City (Palestinian Territories) (AFP)

Israel struck bases of militant groups in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, the enclave's Islamist rulers Hamas said, hours after nearly 30 mortars rounds were fired at the Jewish state.

At least one base belonging to Hamas and four for Islamic Jihad, an allied group, were struck, security sources said.

A spokesman for Hamas, the Islamist group that runs the Gaza Strip, confirmed only that "resistance" bases were being hit.

There were no immediate reports of injuries.

Israel's military said it was "currently operating in the Gaza Strip. The explosions heard are related to this activity. Details to follow."

The strikes came shortly after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged a "powerful" response to some 28 mortar shells fired at Israel from Gaza early Tuesday.

There were no reports of injuries.

One mortar shell exploded near a kindergarten building, a military spokesman said, causing damage to the structure.

It was the largest projectile barrage from Gaza targeting Israel since a 2014 war, according to Israel's Shin Bet internal security service.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the mortars, which Israeli media speculated were fired by Islamic Jihad.

Israel holds Hamas responsible for any fire from Gaza. It has controlled the Palestinian enclave since 2007.

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