Three soldiers were killed in Gaza fighting Saturday, and two died of their wounds, pushing the IDF death toll in nearly three weeks of conflict with Hamas to 42.
On Saturday night, the army announced that two soldiers injured in fighting over the past week had died of their wounds: Cpt. Liad Lavi, 22 and Sgt.-Maj. Rami Kahlon, 39.
Earlier in the day, the IDF said three soldiers had been killed in combat: Lt. Roy Peles, 21; Staff Sgt. Avraham Grintzvaig, 21; and Staff sgt. Gal Bason, 21.
The military also released the name of the second of two soldiers killed Friday overnight in Gaza. He was Amit Yeori, 20, from Jerusalem.
Lavi, an Infantry Corps officer from Talmei Yosef, was wounded in fighting on July 24. Kahlon, an infantry non-commissioned officer from Hadera, was injured on July 22.
The army said Peles, from Tel Aviv, was killed when an armored vehicle was hit by militant fire. Grintzveig, of Petah Tikva, was killed in a firefight in the northern Gaza Strip and Bason, of Holon, was killed during fighting in northern Gaza.
Over 100 soldiers have been injured since Operation Protective Edge began on July 8, several of them seriously, according to IDF and media numbers.
Earlier the IDF had said that two soldiers were killed overnight, giving the name of one as Guy Boyland, 21 years old from Ginosar.
On Friday the military had announced the deaths of two soldiers: Master Sgt. Yair Ashkenazy and Staff Sgt. Guy Levy.
Levy was killed by an anti-tank missile fired from near a UN school, the IDF said. Mortar shells and anti-tank missiles were fired “from a structure near an UNRWA school,” the IDF said, killing Levy and injuring several others.
Ashkenazy, 36, was killed in combat in the northern Gaza Strip, possibly by friendly fire. He is survived by his wife and three children.
The military also said Friday that Sgt. Oron Shaul, previously declared Missing in Action and claimed by Hamas to have been kidnapped, was killed in the Gaza neighborhood of Shejaiya on July 13, during a bloody battle in which six other IDF troops died as well. The missing soldier’s remains have not been found, but a special IDF ethics committee ruled that sufficient evidence exists to determine that Shaul was killed in the attack.
IDF Chief Rabbi Brig. Gen. Rafi Peretz notified the soldier’s family that Shaul was designated a fallen soldier “whose place of burial is unknown.” This means a funeral will not be held at this time.
Racheli Gazit, speaking on behalf of the family on Friday afternoon, said the family was “still grappling with the news” and would not say that they accepted it.
Hitherto, the family had stated that they considered Shaul to be alive.