Israeli soldiers killed during the early hours of Monday morning three Palestinian gunmen who were approaching the security fence in the south Gaza Strip.
An IDF force positioned near the Sufa crossing spotted the gunmen nearing the security fence separating Israel from Gaza. Soldiers from the Givati Brigade's Tzabar Battalion who were dispatched to the scene entered Palestinian territory and shot the Palestinian gunmen dead. Two explosive devices and rifles were found on the terrorists' bodies.
Palestinian sources reported of heavy exchanges of fire between the soldiers and the gunmen, apparently from Islamic Jihad's al-Quds Brigades, and said the gunmen managed to set off an explosive device near an army jeep. The IDF said the gunmen were looking to plant two bombs, adding that one of them was detonated as the soldiers stormed the terrorists.
"The threat of explosive devices targeting army patrols is well known," an IDF official said. "The terror organizations are going to great lengths to plant these bombs, some of which are highly advanced."
A few hours after the incident Israeli aircraft opened fire at two gunmen near the security fence in south Gaza, near Khan Younis. The IDF said a hit was identified.
Palestinian sources said three gunmen belonging to Hamas' armed wing, the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades, were inured in the attack.
On Sunday two mortars were fired from Gaza toward Israel. One landed near the Karni crossing, while the other landed near the security fence. No injuries were reported in either incident.
The mortar and rocket fire on Israel has subsided in recent days amid Egyptian efforts to broker a ceasefire between Israel and the armed Palestinian organizations in Gaza.
In another incident that occurred Saturday, an Israeli aircraft opened fire at a group of five gunmen near the security fence in north Gaza. A hit was identified.