[QODLink]
Middle East
Gazans killed in border clash
Israeli soldier is also wounded following exchange of gunfire near Gaza's boundary with Israel.
Last Modified: 12 Dec 2010 02:58 GMT
US-backed peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians have stalled [AFP]

Two Palestinians have been killed and an Israeli soldier wounded in an exchange of gunfire near the border of the Gaza Strip with Israel.

The Israeli army said in a statement that the two Palestinians died after a 20-minute gun battle on Saturday near the security barrier separating Israel from the Palestinian territory.

"Soldiers identified two suspects near the security fence in the central Gaza Strip. The force fired towards the suspects, and they were killed as a result.

"During searches at the scene, shots were fired at the force, apparently resulting in the injury of one of the soldiers," the statement said.

Exchange of fire

The wounded soldier was taken by helicopter to a hospital in the southern city of Beersheba. The statement said he had suffered moderate wounds.

On the Palestinian side, witnesses told the AFP news agency that they saw armed men exchange fire with Israeli soldiers before two Israeli tanks and two armoured troop carriers entered 100 metres into the Palestinian zone.

Earlier on Saturday, a rocket fired from the Gaza Strip hit southern Israel without causing casualties or damage, an Israeli military spokesman said.

The latest violence comes as weeks of efforts by Washington to save the peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians appear to have failed.

The United States was unable to persuade Israel to renew a freeze on building Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

Barack Obama, the US president, presided over the relaunch of direct talks in Washington in September, only to see them stall within weeks when a settlement moratorium expired and the Palestinians refused to return to the table.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
Lawsuit by 6-year-old girl, locked up for a year, reignites debate over indefinite detention of 'boat people'.
Indonesian and Malaysian authorities are keeping a close eye on local supporters of the hard-line Middle East group.
Citizens of the tiny African nation say they're increasingly anxious of the fallout after alleged coup.
A humanitarian crisis and a budget crisis converge in the heart of the human smuggling corridor in Texas.
Assam officials upset that WWII-era Stillwell Road won't be used in transnational highway linking four Asian nations.
join our mailing list