Witnesses say an Israel helicopter fired missiles at a Gaza refugee camp, after Israel vowed to kill the leaders of the Palestinian militant group Hamas for bus bombings that killed 16 people Tuesday. Palestinian witnesses say the helicopter fired at least two missile into Khan Younis. The Israeli military had no immediate comment on the reported strike. Israeli officials say they are also holding Syria responsible for Tuesday's suicide bombings because they say Damascus continues to support Hamas activities. A military source told the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, that "a limited operation against Syria is inevitable in the long run." Hamas says the bus bombings in Beersheva were in retaliation for the killings of Hamas co-founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and his successor earlier this year, informs VOANews. According to Reuters, the Israeli army has pushed into a Gaza refugee camp and wounded six Palestinians in missile strikes, including gunmen, medics say, a day after militants killed 16 Israelis in double bus bombings. Wednesday's attack on Khan Younis refugee camp, a frequent target of Israeli raids, occured a day after Hamas militants killed 16 Israelis in twin bus bombings in the southern town of Beersheba. An Israeli helicopter fired missiles that hit two streets near hospitals, wounding six Palestinians, including civilians as well as militants affliated with Palestinian President Yasser Arafat's Fatah group. A military source said Israel had targeted "an explosive device spotted in an open area". The militants had been planting a bomb, Palestinian sources said. One missile was fired to ward off gunmen approaching soldiers, the military source said. Witnesses said about 20 tanks and military vehicles rolled into the camp from two directions in what military sources confirmed as an operation to target militants. Troops opened heavy fire as they rolled into the camp, setting a house ablaze and forcing its residents to flee, witnesses said. Israel has vowed to target all militants responsible for planning attacks against Israelis. Army Chief Moshe Yaalon said, in response to the Beersheba bombings: "Whoever is responsible for using terror against us won't sleep quietly." Israeli intelligence came under careful criticism today for its failure to crack the Hamas cell in Hebron that carried out the twin suicide bombings in Beersheba on Tuesday in which 16 people died and more than 100 were wounded. The Hamas cell, led by Imad Qawasme, has been responsible for the deaths of more than 80 Israelis, and its internal security has been so disciplined that neither Israeli army intelligence nor the Shin Beth has been able to crack it. The army was concerned that Hamas was preparing an operation from Hebron because of an unusual period of quiet, officials said today, but there was no specific warning on which to act. The Hebron cell is strictly compartmentalized and makes little use of the telephone, Israeli security officials say, and after successful attacks, the leadership normally goes underground, publishes NYTimes.
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