American pop stars the Backstreet Boys have been forced to cancel a performance in Israel after security fear during the latest round of conflict between Israel and Gaza militants.
In a joint decision by the IDF Home Command and the Rishon LeZion local government, the long-awaited gig, part of the band's world tour, was cancelled with just hours' notice on Friday afternoon.
Israel has been rocked by nearly a week of nonstop rockets from the Gaza Strip, which the IDF believe to be coming from Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
Operation Shield and Arrow, the IDF codename for the latest series of military engagements, started on Tuesday morning after an Israel Air Force strike on three high-level targets in Gaza City.
This was followed by a barrage of rockets from the territory, which at the latest count, numbered over 850 in the last three days.
Yesterday, a man was killed in the central Israeli city of Rehovot after a direct hit from a rocket on an apartment building.
A spokesman for the IDF said that the fatal strike was caused by Iron Dome missing the rocket as it flew toward Israel.
The Israeli government has said that they would be ready to 'deal heavy blows' to Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday afternoon told the heads of southern local and regional councils that the IDF’s Operation Shield and Arrow could be a protracted effort.
“We are ready for the possibility of an expanded campaign and harsh strikes against Gaza,” Netanyahu said.