IDF soldiers stationed on the Israel-Gaza border on Thursday fired on Palestinians who had amassed near the border fence after they ignored warnings to distance themselves from the barrier, the army said.
The IDF Spokesperson said that a group of “at least five” Palestinians approached the fence and attempted to damage it. Troops fired at one man’s lower body and confirmed the man was hit.
Palestinian sources reported that two men were injured by Israeli fire in the incident. The Ma’an News Agency quoted Gaza Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Kidra as saying that a 20-year-old man was shot in the chest and was in moderate to serious condition, and a 22-year-old was in moderate condition after being shot in the hand.
IDF Spokeswoman Avital Leibovich told The Times of Israel that there have been at least 12 incidents in which Gazan mobs attempted to damage the border fence since November’s Operation Pillar of Defense. The numbers of individuals involved, however, are in decline, she noted.
The Palestinians also told Ma’an that IDF vehicles “crossed into northern Gaza near Beit Lahiya to level lands.”
The IDF Spokesperson acknowledged that, earlier on Thursday, IDF vehicles conducted a routine operation in the area near the border fence, but did not indicate on which side of the border they were.