FLAREUP

Hamas Hits Israel With Mortars

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is heating up again: Islamist militant group Hamas targeted Israel on Saturday, firing 54 mortar shells at the country's border communities near the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. Two Israeli civilians were wounded by shrapnel, and residents were told to seek refuge in bomb shelters. Palestinian officials said Israel responded by firing tank shells into Gaza, wounding five people, including three Hamas militants. Israel invaded Gaza two years ago to intervene on daily rocket barrages by militants, which resulted in disputes that left the territory in a devastated state with more than 1,400 people dead. Gaza militants have not attacked since, and the territory's Hamas rulers are apparently attempting to avoid an Israeli invasion.