Israeli military said the target was fighters "identified as planting an explosive near a border security fence" [Reuters]


At least four people, including children, have been injured in an Israeli tank fire in central Gaza, Israeli and Palestinian sources said.

Witnesses said the Israeli army fired at least three rounds at an area east of the Al-Bureij refugee camp, wounding several Palestinians.

Hamas officials said Israeli forces fired in the direction of a home after darkness fell on Thursday.

Medical workers said four people including a woman and two children had been taken to a hospital with slight injuries.

The Israeli military confirmed the incident, saying it targeted fighters "identified as planting an explosive near a border security fence" and that "uninvolved civilians were apparently injured in this incident".

"Israeli tanks fired shells at terrorists and hit them as they were about to place explosive devices near the security barrier" between the Gaza Strip and Israeli territory, a military spokesman said.

Thursday's incident comes just days after rival governments Hamas and Fatah agreed to end their dispute. Israel rejected the Palestinian unity deal saying it could derail the peace process.

The attack shattered a shaky truce achieved after a spate of cross-border violence earlier this month.

Nineteen Palestinians in Gaza were killed this month in retaliatory Israeli strikes launched after Hamas claimed responsibility for shooting at an Israeli school bus, critically wounding an Israeli teenager who later died of his injuries.

The fighting died down after the United Nations and other officials achieved an unofficial truce about two weeks ago.

Source: Agencies