1 killed in IDF clash with Gaza gunmen

10 hurt as undercover soldiers enter Beit Lahiya, seize Hamas leader; wanted man's daughter killed.

IDF n. gaza brill (photo credit: IDF)
IDF n. gaza brill
(photo credit: IDF)
A Palestinian was killed and 10 were wounded early Saturday morning in clashes between terrorists and IDF troops in a northern Gaza town. The soldiers entered the town and seized a Hamas leader from his home amid heavy fighting with Palestinian gunmen, witnesses and medics said. The wanted man's 14-year-old daughter was killed in the fighting, they added. The fighting erupted in the town of Beit Lahiya, near the border with Israel. The army confirmed the raid, saying its forces went in to arrest a Hamas member and exchanged fire with Palestinian terrroists. The target of the raid was Talat Hassan Marouf, a local Hamas leader. The fighting took place around his house, and Israeli forces withdrew after detaining him, said Abu Obeida, a spokesman for the Hamas military wing. The army said troops came under fire from inside the house, where Marouf's family was at the time. His 14-year old daughter, Mariam, was killed by shrapnel from heavy machine guns, medics in Al-Awda Hospital in northern Gaza said. Her mother was injured in the clashes. An IDF official said the family asked to be evacuated and was eventually permitted to do so by the soldiers. The official, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with army regulations, couldn't say if this was before or after the girl was killed. The wanted Hamas member then turned himself in, the army official said. However, a Hamas spokesman, Abdel Latif al-Qanou, said the IDF had prevented medics from arriving to the house to evacuate the injured daughter and wife, leading to the girl's death. He said troops attacked Marouf's house with shells and missiles, causing its destruction. Nine other Palestinians, including seven gunmen, were also wounded in the fighting, said Dr. Moawiya Hassanain, a Palestinian Health Ministry official. Three of the gunmen were in critical condition, he said. The fighting began before dawn when an IDF undercover unit entered an area of northern Gaza near the border with Israel. Hamas and Islamic Jihad gunmen fired at the force, using machine guns, mortars and homemade bombs. A dozen IDF tanks and IAF aircraft provided cover during the clashes. The army said the IAF launched two missile strikes against the terroirsts.