Ax-wielding Palestinian Shot Dead by Israeli Forces on Gaza Border, Army Says

Almog Ben Zikri
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The ax carried by a Palestinian attempting to cross the Israel-Gaza border, June 4, 2018.
The ax carried by a Palestinian attempting to cross the Israel-Gaza border, June 4, 2018.Credit: IDF Spokesperson's Unit
Almog Ben Zikri

One ax-wielding Palestinian was shot dead by the Israeli military on Monday after attempting to infiltrate Israeli territory from Gaza, the army confirmed. A second Palestinian was shot and wounded before managing to return to Gaza.

A photo circulating in social networks reportedly shows one of the men who attempted to infiltrate Israel. According to the report, the man pictured is Ramzi Najjar, a resident of Khuza'a in Khan Yunis who lived near Razan Najjar, the medic who was shot dead by Israeli army on Friday. 

On Sunday, Israeli firefighters battled a large fire near the Israeli border community of Or Haner, a day after a number of blazes broke out on along the border with Gaza, in what is suspected to be arson caused by Palestinians across the border.

Earlier Sunday, several Palestinians crossed the border fence in the southern Gaza Strip and started a fire before returning to Gaza.

In light of the recent fires started by burning kites, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has instructed National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat to advance a plan to use Palestinian Authority funds to offset the cost of compensating those in Gaza border communities for damage done by the fires.

On Saturday, The Israeli Air Force struck 15 Hamas targets in three different locations in the Gaza Strip in response to rockets launched from Gaza, three of which were intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile system. The rockets were the first violation of a cease-fire reached last week after a heated flare-up along the border, the worst since 2014's Operation Protective Edge.

The cease-fire was brokered by Egypt with Hamas, without Israeli involvement in the talks. The Israeli army clarified it would respect it so long as Hamas stopped the mortar fire and maintained the calm. The cease-fire followed a tense day, during which 100 missiles were launched at Israel from Gaza. 

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