JERUSALEM, Dec. 25 (Xinhua) -- The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) deployed another Iron Dome anti-missile battery in the southern city of Sderot, amid recent militant attacks against Israelis in the past few days, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon announced Wednesday.
Ya'alon, who was visiting a military drill conducted in the West Bank, said the Israeli army is preparing for a possible escalation in hostilities from Palestinian militants, after an Israeli worker of the Defense Ministry was shot dead by a Palestinian sniper on the Gaza border fence on Tuesday, the Walla news website reported.
He also added as far as Israel is concerned, Hamas is the sovereign in the Gaza Strip and therefore it carries the responsibility for any attacks carried out from its turf.
"We expect Hamas to impose its authority on its people. If it doesn't do so we will react as we did yesterday, in a strong manner," Ya'alon said, referring to the retaliatory Israeli Air Force raids in the strip which resulted in the death of a 3 year- old girl, her father and several other injuries.
"We're preparing for a possibility of an escalation; there is a deployment of Iron Dome batteries, including another one in Sderot, " he added.
The air defense systems are capable of intercepting missiles and artillery shells launched from a distance of up to 70 km.
Earlier on Wednesday, the Israeli Police commissioner Yohanan Danino, who visited an Israeli policeman stabbed and moderately wounded on Monday in the West Bank near Ramallah, said that security forces estimated that due to the peace negotiations there would be an increase in militant attacks.