GAZA CITY — Palestinians in Gaza claimed an Islamic Jihad activist was killed in an Israeli drone strike in the coastal strip, but Israel denied any operations in the area.

The circumstances of Wednesday’s incident were not immediately clear. Gaza health ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Kidra said the man, Mohammed al-Ejlla, was killed in an Israeli attack. The AFP news agency quoted family and medical sources saying he had been “torn apart” in a drone attack.

But the Israeli military denied responsibility. “We did not strike in Gaza today,” an IDF spokesperson said, “and we are unaware of any incident involving tanks or other shooting.”

Al-Kidra said 33-year-old al-Ejlla was killed near the border with Israel. He said two teenagers were slightly injured in the incident.

Islamic Jihad confirmed that al-Ejlla was one of its fighters.

Flare-ups along the border have been relatively rare since Israel and Gaza’s Hamas rulers fought an eight-day battle in 2012. But violent incidents occasionally occur.

Terrorists have sometimes blown themselves up while preparing attacks in “work accidents.”