Injured soldier evacuated
Photo: Herzel Yosef

Palestinian gunman involved in today's attack injured in IAF strike

Air Force targets motorcycle in Khan Younis driven by Hussain Abu Shamia, who took part in border attack on IDF patrol earlier today that killed soldier, wounded three. Top military officials said response to attack 'should not be proportional'

Palestinian sources in Gaza reported Tuesday that the Israeli Air Force fired at a motorcycle in the southern Gaza Strip town of Khan Younis. One man was confirmed wounded in the attack, identified by defense officials as Hussain Abu Shamia, who was involved in the border attack on an IDF patrol earlier today that killed one soldier and wounded three.


According to the officials, a terror cell affiliated with the Worldwide Jihad planted five explosive devices along the security fence in an attempt to hit IDF forces on patrol. The group is apparently not directly linked to Hamas, but may have been operating under its auspices.


The IDF is still investigating Tuesday's attack at the Kissufim crossing, near the Israel-Gaza border. The incident left one soldier dead and three others injured.


Military forces, aided by tanks, have been canvassing Palestinian territory since the morning hours; patrolling west of the security fence in an effort to examine what was left of the explosive device which detonated, and unearth other explosives which may lay in wait in the area.


Specialty vehicles and Engineering Corps forces are taking part in the mission, as Israel Air Force helicopters provide cover. There have also been reports of the troops firing at several suspicious targets.


The IDF said that if the explosives were placed in the area overnight, it would mean Hamas is signaling that not only does it have no intention of halting its attacks against IDF soldiers; it intends on increasing them and may even try to mount another abduction.


Meanwhile, the defense establishment is also gearing for a possible retaliation to Hamas' ceasefire violation. Senior military officials called for an extensive response, not necessarily a "proportionate" one, against Hamas targets in Gaza, it order to make Israel's stand on any violations clear.


Any show of restraint, said a security source, might imply Israel sees the attack as "legitimate," de facto encouraging Hamas to launch future attacks.


Palestinian source in Gaza reported that Hamas has been evacuating its government and security offices, fearing an Israeli strike.


According to the repots, civilians living on the Gaza side of Kissufim have been seen leaving their homes. 


Ali Waked contributed to this report


פרסום ראשון: 01.27.09, 16:27
 new comment
This will delete your current comment