The slain paratroopers were identified as Staff Sergeant Oren Lifschitz, 21, of Kibbutz Gazit and Staff Sergeant Moran Cohen, 21, of Kibbutz Ashdot Yaakov.
The incident began when Cohen was injured during Tuesday morning’s gun battles in the Lebanese town, and during his rescue, which was conducted under heavy missile and gun fire, Lifschitz was seriously wounded.
The IDF is looking into the possibility that Lifschitz was struck by friendly fire.
The injured soldiers later died of their wounds on the way to Rambam Hospital in Haifa.
Israeli warplanes attacked Early Wednesday a Hizbullah structure in Bint Jbeil from which terrorists opened fire at IDF paratroopers; some 10 terrorists were inside the structure, which collapsed.
Earlier it was reported that two IDF reservists were killed and another two were lightly and moderately injured in exchanges of fire with Hizbullah early Tuesday morning. The battle took place near the village of Labouna in the Bint Jbeil area in southwest Lebanon.
'Complicated operation with unfortunate results'
The incident in Bint Jbeil began at around 6 a.m. Tuesday, when an elite Paratroopers Brigade force scoured the town for terrorists.
Cohen's evacuation began only at around 4 p.m., with troops carrying him on a stretcher towards an IDF tank that was set to transport the soldier to a helicopter waiting nearby.
However, gunmen opened fire at the evacuating forces, injuring Lifschitz seriously. The forces eventually succeeded in carrying both wounded troops to the tank, which then transferred them to the chopper; the soldiers’ condition deteriorated and they died of their wounds on the way to Haifa’s Rambam Hospital.
“This was a complicated operation with unfortunate results,” a senior IDF sources said. “But the troops acted bravely, as you would expect of them.”