Israeli Army fires missile at Palestinian gunmen
GAZA: The Israeli Army fired a missile at a group of Palestinian militants who had launched mortars at a Jewish settlement in the Gaza Strip, the army and Palestinian officials said on Wednesday.
One of the gunmen was critically wounded by the missile, which Palestinian officials said was launched from an unmanned drone hovering about the Gush Katif Jewish settlement bloc. “Two Palestinians had a rocket launcher in place and were preparing to launch further attacks on Gush Katif. They were aerially targeted in order to stop them from firing,” said an army spokesman. It was the first time the Israeli military had fired missiles at Palestinian militants since a de facto truce was declared in February.
Meanwhile, Israeli forces shot dead a Hamas gunman near the border with Egypt, drawing a warning from the Palestinian militant group that a three-month-old ceasefire could be at risk.
Israeli military sources said troops had opened fire after gunmen shot automatic weapons and anti-tanks missiles at them. Hamas, the most powerful Islamic faction, said one of its militants was killed while on a night patrol in southern Gaza.
Hamas issued a statement warning Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon that “the security you are enjoying these days will not last long if aggression continues against our people.” agencies