Israeli military: 4 soldiers wounded in Gaza border blast

Emmett Rice
February 18, 2018

Shortly after the attack, the IDF retaliated by attacking a Hamas base located just over the Gaza border, near where the explosion occurred.

The Israeli military said Saturday that four soldiers were wounded, two seriously, in an explosion along the Israeli border with Gaza.

The IDF "sees with gravity attempts by Hamas to use supposedly spontaneous popular demonstrations to turn the border region into an arena of conflict and to execute terrorist operations", an army statement said. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the incident "severe" and vowed to "respond accordingly".

Hamas has blamed the "Israeli occupation for the escalation in the Gaza Strip", a spokesman said. The shots were fired at a Hamas facility located east of the city of Khan Yunis, according to Israeli media.

Later, Gaza officials reported a series of Israeli airstrikes against empty militant training sites.

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Israeli battle tanks have targeted the southern part of the Gaza Strip as the Tel Aviv regime goes ahead with its acts of aggression against the besieged Palestinian coastal sliver. Palestinian officials said the target belonged to the Islamic Jihad group and that there were no casualties on the Palestinian side. But he insisted that "from our point of view Hamas is responsible" and said the explosive had been planted during a protest arranged by the group on Friday.

Hamas's armed wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, in a statement said they had fired at the Israeli jets overhead.

In the post 2014 war reality established along the volatile frontier, Israel generally carries out limited retaliations to any militant provocations in Gaza.

The March 5 visit comes after a war of words between close allies Israel and the United States over settlements, and a scandal that has seen police recommend Netanyahu be indicted for graft.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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