Israeli helicopter gunships fire at least nine missiles on Gaza City, hitting targets near Palestinian headquarters.
Gaza City burns after Israeli missile strikes.
The Israeli military on Monday afternoon attacked targets in the Palestinian city of Gaza. The strikes are a retaliation for the suicide bombings by Hamas militants that killed at least 25 people and wounded about 200 over the weekend.
Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon blamed Palestinian President Yasser Arafat for the terrorist acts. "A war has been imposed upon us," Sharon said in an address to the Israeli people. "Arafat is responsible for everything."
Sharon vowed to pursue those responsible. He added that the Palestinian attacks intended to "exile us from here", but that they would fail. He indicated that Monday's strikes were just the beginning of Israel's planned retaliation. "We will take the necessary measures as long as the terror exists," he said.
The missile attacks hit various targets close to Arafat's headquarters in Gaza City. Three of his helicopters and a hangar were damaged. Palestinian Cabinet member Nabil Sha'ath said on CNN that the barracks of Arafat's personal guards had also been destroyed. Arafat was not at his Gaza facility at the time.
Further strikes hit one of Arafat's offices and a Palestinian police headquarters in the West Bank city of Jenin.