Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz on Thursday vowed to keep pressure on the Gaza Strip in order to alleviate rocket firing, local media reported.
Peretz made the remarks during the weekly security assessment on Thursday, a day after one woman was killed and two others were seriously wounded in rocket strikes on southern Israeli town of Sedrot by Palestinian militants.
The defense minister ordered the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to draft new battle plans for targeting rocket launcher in Gaza.
Peretz expressed hopes that the trends in the Palestinian authority would turn to strengthening the moderates, saying that if not, "Israel will deliver terrorism a powerful blow, a hard and painful blow."
However, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert expressed reservations over a widespread military operation in the Gaza Strip. Instead, Olmert said he favored pinpoint strikes.
On Wednesday, about 15 rockets hit the western Negev, including four in Ashkelon and 11 in Sderot. Islamic Jihad and militants from the ruling Hamas movement both claimed responsibility for the attacks.