Gaza rocket hits south of Jerusalem
AFP, Tuesday 20 Nov 2012
A rocket struck just south of Jerusalem on Tuesday as UN chief Ban Ki-moon was to arrive for talks on ending the Gaza crisis

A loud explosion could be heard in the southern part of Jerusalem shortly after air raid sirens were sounded, with police confirming that searches were under way, AFP correspondents said.

Police said the rocket had crashed into an open area in the West Bank settlement bloc of Gush Etzion, just south of Jerusalem, without causing any casualties. "The rocket was found in the Gush Etzion area," spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP. The Israeli military also confirmed a rocket had landed in the area.

Settlers living in Gush Etzion said they heard "a very loud explosion". Minutes before the sirens rang out, an AFP correspondent in Gaza City reported hearing the loud report of an outgoing rocket.

The attack was claimed by Hamas's armed wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, which said it had fired "an M75 rocket at the occupied city of Jerusalem".

The UN chief, who spent the past two days in Egypt, had been scheduled to hold talks in Jerusalem with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman at 1230 GMT. An AFP correspondent at Cairo airport said he had taken off at 1040 GMT.

A similar attack on Friday set sirens ringing around the city for the first time in decades, with police confirming a Hamas rocket had landed in an open area in the West Bank, just to the south of Jerusalem