IDF forces shot dead two suspected Palestinian terrorists apparently carrying a bomb near the border fence with the Gaza Strip on Sunday morning.
Both Palestinians were apparently killed in the incident east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip.
Security forces believe the two were part of a cell from the Islamic Jihad terror group.
The incident began when IDF troops spotted the two approaching the border fence north of Khan Yunis and placed a device identified as a bomb against the fence.
IDF troops from the Kfir Brigade, which is responsible for the area, rushed to the scene and opened fire at the two Palestinians before the device exploded, apparently killing the two Palestinians.
The incident comes as Israel is making strenuous efforts to create a period of calm along the Gaza border, where its communities come under almost daily rocket, mortar and balloon bomb attacks from the Strip.
Former defense minister Avgidor Liberman revealed Saturday that Mossad Director Yossi Cohen and GOC Southern Command Maj. Gen. Herzi Halevi made a secret visit to Qatar earlier this month, where they met with senior officials.
Qatar is a main provider of financial aid to the cash-strapped Gaza Strip, handing over millions of dollars every month, and according to Liberman, the two Israelis "begged" Doha to keep sending money to the Hamas-run enclave.
The Prime Minister's Office and the IDF Spokesperson's Unit declined to comment on the issue.
Last week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met told the heads of local authorities in the Gaza Strip that it would be difficult to order a significant military operation in Gaza in the pre-election period.
Israel goes to the polls for the third time in a year on March 2. The two previous elections in April and September of 2019 left neither Netanyahu nor his main rival Benny Gantz able to form a coalition.
"We are preparing for all scenarios, including a wide-scale operation. If there is no choice, then that is also an option," Netanyahu said.
"The arrangement [for calm with Hamas] is better than war and we must exhaust every angle."