Hamas fighter killed in Israel strike on Gaza

Hamas fighter killed in Israel strike on Gaza
A Hamas fighter was killed and another wounded following an Israeli airstrike on Gaza.
2 min read
12 April, 2018
A Hamas fighter was killed and another wounded in an Israel air strike [Getty]

A Hamas fighter was killed early on Thursday by an Israeli strike in the Gaza Strip, the health ministry in the enclave said.

Mohammed Hijaila was killed and another man seriously wounded during the airstrike, the health ministry in the Hamas-controlled enclave said, confirming he was a member of the movement's militant wing.

He was one of a number of Hamas fighters manning an observation point east of Gaza City when it was struck early on Thursday, a security source said.

Israel confirmed the strikes, saying they were retaliation for gun fire.

The Hamas fighters were apparently shooting at an Israeli jet, which was carrying out strikes in Gaza in response to an explosive device at Israel's border fence on Wednesday.

"In response to the explosive device that was detonated against an engineering vehicle of the (army) yesterday, Israeli fighter jets struck military targets in the Gaza Strip," the Israeli army said in a statement.

"After the strike, a terror cell fired with machine guns at an (Israeli) aircraft, without actually harming it. (Israeli) aircraft intercepted the terror cell."

At least 32 Palestinians in Gaza have been killed by Israeli forces since March 30 when demonstrations took place to mark Land Day.

Most died after Israeli forces fired indiscriminately at unarmed Gazans, who were protesting peacefully along the border. Others have been hit by tank fire.

Islamists Hamas have controlled Gaza since 2007 and have fought three wars with Israel since.

Gaza is one of the most densely populated territories in the word, with two million Palestinians crammed into just 362 square kilometres – and unable to leave. Living standards have deteriorated rapidly since Israel imposed a crippling blockade on the coastal enclave a decade ago, with rights groups describing the Strip as the world's largest open-air prison.