GAZA CITY, Palestine: At least seven Palestinians, including a Hamas military commander, were martyred and another seven injured late Sunday in an Israeli raid in southern Gaza Strip, said officials.
Ashraf al-Qidra, a spokesman for the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza, said in a statement that the Palestinians were killed after Israeli forces targeted a group of people east of the city of Khan Younis.
Al-Qidra identified the victims as Nour al-Din Muhammad Salama Baraka, 37, Mohammed Majid Mousa al-Qara, 23, Alaeddin Mohammed Qweider, 22, Mustafa Hassan Abu Odeh, 21, Mahmoud Atallah Musbeh, 25, Alaa Nasrallah Abdullah Fseifes, 24, and Omar Naji Abu Khater, 21.
Al-Qidra announced that the ministry has declared a state of alert for all of its crews.
In a statement, Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, the armed wing of Hamas movement, confirmed the attack and said Baraka, one of their commanders, was among the killed.
“Our fighters pursued the Israeli force and the security incident [clashes] is ongoing,” read the statement.
The Israeli army said its forces carried out a “security operation” in the Gaza Strip, followed by violent clashes.
One Israeli soldier was killed and another slightly injured an exchange of fire during the operation, said the army.
The Israeli army spokesman Avichay Adraee said “at least 10 rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip into Israel.
“Two of them were intercepted by the iron dome,” he said of Israeli air-defense system.
No one claimed responsibility for the rocket fire.
Also, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cut off his visit in French capital Paris and returned to Israel Sunday night due to the deadly incidents, said his office.
Netanyahu was attending an event there to commemorate the centenary of the end of the First World War.