Israeli forces hit two Hamas terror cells close to the border with the Gaza Strip on Thursday morning, Army Radio reported.
In the first strike, an Israel Defense Forces tank, assisted by the Israel Air Force, fired on terrorists close to the border with Kibbutz Nahal Oz. The Hamas operatives were preparing to fire an anti-tank missile at Israeli troops who were carrying out a routine patrol along the border. Palestinian sources said that three people were wounded, one mortally.
A few hours later, the IAF launched a strike on the Zeitoun neighborhood in the northern Gaza Strip, on a cell that was preparing to launch rockets at Israel. Palestinian sources said one armed terrorist was killed and another wounded. Hamas named the dead man as Mahmoud al-Hiji, a member of its military wing.
The IDF Spokesperson’s Office said in a statement, “The IDF will not tolerate any attempt to harm Israeli civilians or soldiers and will continue to take action against anyone who uses terrorism against the State of Israel. Hamas is accountable and must bear responsibility.”
This week has seen a number of exchanges of fire across the Gaza border: On Tuesday night, the IAF attacked two Hamas-linked terrorist targets in the southern Gaza Strip in response to gunfire from there that hit a vehicle and restaurant in Kibbutz Yad Mordechai. In addition, two Qassam rockets hit the area of the Ashkelon Regional Council and mortars were also fired at a town in the Eshkol Regional Council in southern Israel.