- The Washington Times - Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Police say a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip caused damage just south of the city of Ashkelon, as tensions continue to mount between Israelis and Palestinians, just weeks before President Obama is due to make his first visit to the area.

Mickey Ronsenfeld, a Israeli police spokesman, found remnants of the rocket, but said nobody was injured, The Associated Press reports.

The attack came on the heels of an Israeli troop skirmish with protesters near holy areas of Bethlehem, during which two teenage Palestinian teenagers were injured, AP reported.

The West Bank has been the site of several protests in the past few days, as Palestinians rallied against the weekend death of one man held in Israeli custody. Israel conducted an autopsy and found the prisoner died of cardiac arrest. Palestinians have disputed that finding, claiming he was killed during torture by Israeli security forces.

Mr. Obama is due to make his first visit to Israel in the coming weeks. One U.S. Department of State spokesman, Patrick Ventrell, said the U.S. has asked the two sides for “maximum restraint” in their clashes, AP reports.

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