The Israel Defense Forces killed at least three Hamas militants on Monday in two separate incidents in the northern Gaza Strip.

In the first incident, an Israel Air Force aircraft opened a missile strike on militants at a mortar launching pad in the northern town of Beit Hanoun. One militant was wounded in the incident and at least one other was killed.

An IDF spokeswoman said the missile targeted militants who had launched two mortar shells at Israel shortly before, and identified hitting them.

Witnesses said an IAF missile was fired in the northern part of the territory near a key crossing with Israel. Most Palestinian rocket and mortar attacks against Israel originate in the north of the strip.

Hamas, which controls the coastal enclave, said the militants were members of their group.

In the second incident, which occurred near the Erez Crossing, two other militants were killed by IDF fire on the ground. The two were suspected of preparing an explosive device targeting IDF troops patrolling the area.

Israel has placed its security forces on high alert, saying that Hamas and other armed Palestinian groups may try to disrupt the Annapolis conference by carrying out deadly high-profile attacks against Israeli targets.

Over the weekend, IDF soldiers shot dead two Palestinian men who approached the border fence separating Gaza from Israel, Palestinian medical staff said. The two brothers, in their forties, had walked close to an Israel-Gaza border terminal late on Friday night.