Published: Sat, July 21, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Israeli forces kill at least four Palestinians in Gaza

Israeli forces kill at least four Palestinians in Gaza

Conricus said that he did not have details of which Palestinian faction carried out the shooting attack but that Israel holds Hamas responsible for all attacks from Gaza.

Four Palestinians were shot and killed by Israeli forces during the weekly protest on Friday, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.

It said "fighter jets commenced a wide-scale attack against Hamas military targets throughout the Gaza Strip". The military wing of Hamas, which has fought three wars with Israel since 2008, said three of its fighters were killed in strikes.

For nearly four months, Palestinians in the Gaza Strip have been holding nearly daily demonstrations called "The Great March of Return" near the Gaza-Israel border.

"The event that happened today is something that we can not tolerate and can not allow to become a routine norm, that's why we retaliated and that's why we continue to target military targets belonging to Hamas", Israeli military spokesman Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Conricus said. The military did not specify the condition of the other soldiers who came under fire.

Stressing that the army is on high alert, the statement said: "Hamas chooses to escalate tension and will bear the consequences of these actions".

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Israeli artillery units shelled several positions allegedly associated with Palestinian resistance group Hamas, which has governed the Gaza Strip since 2007.

According to the Israeli media, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrived at army headquarters in Tel Aviv to review the situation in Gaza.

Israel said its aircraft and tanks had struck dozens of targets belonging to Hamas and across the Gaza Strip, including a drone warehouse, aerial defence systems and observation posts.

"The heads of Hamas are forcibly leading us to a no choice situation in which we will need to embark on wide and painful military operation", Lieberman said.

Israel has said it is defending its sovereign border.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have announced that one of their soldiers was murdered by a Palestinian sniper on July 20.

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On Friday, Hamas vowed to continue its protests and the launching of incendiary devices towards Israel.

If confirmed, it would be the third ceasefire between Israel Islamist Hamas to be brokered by Egypt this year and the second truce to be agreed this week after a day-long flare up last Saturday.

"Today, an IDF combat soldier was killed during operational activity near the southern Gaza Strip".

Khalil al-Hayya, Hamas's deputy chief in Gaza, said the kites would continue to fly. The blockade has caused widespread economic hardship.

The soldier's murder was what prompted Israel to launch numerous airstrikes against Hamas, which are still ongoing.

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