A Palestinian was killed by Israeli tank fire into northern Gaza on Monday, the health ministry in the Hamas-run enclave said. It named the dead man as Mohammed al-Rudeia, 30, and said another man was wounded.
An army spokeswoman told AFP that two Palestinian men tried to breach the border fence “with the intention of carrying out an attack”. It said the pair were captured but other Palestinians on the Gaza side fired at Israeli soldiers, without causing injuries.
“In response we attacked with a tank a nearby lookout post,” she said. Eyewitnesses said the tank strike targeted an observation point belonging to an armed group.
A statement by Hamas’s military wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, hailed Rudeia as a “fighter”, an accolade usually only given to its own members. Separately Monday the health ministry announced the death of a Palestinian injured in clashes with Israeli forces.
Nasser al-Areenee, 28, was shot a “number of days ago” east of Jabalia in the northern Gaza Strip, the ministry said, without giving further details. At least 121 Palestinians have been killed during weeks of unrest since March 30, when Palestinians began calling to be allowed to return to their historic homelands inside Israel.
The majority were killed during protests along the border, including at least 61 on May 14. Others have been killed in air strikes, including on Sunday when three members of the Hamas-allied Islamic Jihad militant group were killed.
Israel says it is merely defending its borders and accuses Hamas of encouraging thousands of Palestinians to break through the border and attack Israelis. The Jewish state has fought three wars with Hamas since 2008.
© Agence France-Presse