Israeli troops opened fire at four Palestinians who breached the southern Gaza security fence and set fire to an empty Israel Defense Forces post on Monday, killing one of them, the army said.
According to the military, the four Palestinian youths broke through the fence east of Rafah in the southern Strip and set fire to a sniper’s nest near the border.
“IDF troops spotted the infiltration and monitored the incident. The troops chased after the terrorists, during which time they opened fire at them,” the army said.
“As a result of the gunfire, one terrorist was killed, another was critically injured and was taken for medical treatment, and one was handed over to security forces for interrogation,” the IDF said in a statement.
The critically wounded Palestinian suspect was evacuated to Beersheba’s Soroka Medical Center in an IDF helicopter, the army said.
A hospital spokesperson said his condition had been improved to moderate and that he was undergoing treatment in the trauma center.
According to Palestinian media, one of the suspects made it back to the Gaza Strip. He was taken to a nearby hospital with a bullet wound in his shoulder, the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry said.
During the chase after the suspects, the soldiers reported hearing gunshots fired at them, the army said.
The Shehab news outlet, which is affiliated with theHamas terror group, reported that the shots were fired by members of Palestinian terrorist groups in the area.
No Israeli injuries were reported.
The IDF accused Hamas, which rules Gaza, of being behind the border breach and others that have occurred recently, in which Palestinians have set fire to Israeli military positions and the equipment being used to construct an underground barrier around the Strip to counter attack tunnels.
“Hamas is responsible for everything that happens in the Strip and that emanates from it, and it is behind the attempted border breaches and the damage to security infrastructure. The IDF takes these incidents seriously and will continue to respond to them harshly and aggressively,” the military said.