Israel’s army has stated that its forces killed four heavily armed Palestinian men near the boundary area between Gaza and Israel on Saturday morning.
The army claims that they began open fire when one of the four men crossed into Israel. They further state that the men were carrying assault rifles, anti-tank missiles, and hand grenades. According to their statement, one of the armed men had hurled a grenade at an Israeli soldier.
There have been no casualties reported on Israel’s side.
Thus far, no Palestinian group has claimed responsibility. Hamas has denied responsibility, stating that this was an "individual act by angry youths".
In 2005, Israel pulled troops and settlers away from the Gaza region but continues to keep the area under a harsh blockade, claiming it is for security reasons. In response, Palestinians have staged weekly protest across the line dividing Gaza and Israel since March 2018 against the 12-year Israeli-Egyptian blockade.
Al Jazeera reports that:
“At least 301 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire in Gaza or the boundary area since then, the majority during demonstrations. Seven Israelis have also been killed”.
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