Israeli Soldiers Come Under Fire Near Gaza

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A soldier participating in an IDF drill near Niram, by the northern Gaza Strip, March 25, 2015.Credit: Ilan Asayag

An Israel Defense Forces patrol came under light weapons fire from Gaza on Tuesday near the border fence at Kisufim. No one was hurt. The IDF responded with machine gun fire at what it called “suspicious locations” in the area.

During the incident, the patrol force shot in the air at a Palestinian who approached the border fence; the Palestinian retreated. The military could not say whether there was a connection between the Palestinian and the fire at the IDF force.

Following the incident, the IDF ordered farmers in the Gaza border communities to stop working within a kilometer of the fence, all along the border with the Strip.

An IDF soldier was seriously wounded in December when Palestinian snipers opened fire at troops guarding construction work at the security fence near the southern Gaza Strip.

The IDF responded with tank and aircraft fire in response. Military sources said at the time that the sniper was affiliated with Hamas and that the positions attacked belonged to the organization. The army’s fire killed the commander of the Hamas Al-Qassam Brigades' observation unit, Taysr Asmiri, and several others were wounded. Later, the army said it wasn’t clear who was responsible for the sniper fire.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the time that Israel's "policy is clear – a strong and decisive response to any attempt to disturb the quiet in the south that was achieved after Operation Protective Edge.”

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