IDF foils Gaza infiltration attempt

One gunman apparently killed, one injured; 2 gunmen killed earlier in Jenin; 10 rockets hit negev.

Jenin gunmen 224.8 (photo credit: AP [file])
Jenin gunmen 224.8
(photo credit: AP [file])
An apparent infiltration attempt at the Kerem Shalom crossing on the Gaza border was prevented by the IDF's Beduin desert reconnaissance battalion Thursday. Shots were reportedly fired at three Palestinian gunmen who moved into the Palestinian side of the crossing. One of the gunmen was shot and killed, and one injured. The third gunman fled the scene, and was being pursued by IDF troops. The IDF believed that the men were trying to infiltrate the Israeli side of the crossing in order to carry out an attack. Kerem Shalom, located in the southern Gaza strip, is currently the main crossing used to transfer food and medical supplies to the Gaza Strip. Also Thursday, Palestinian security officials said IDF troops killed two Palestinian terror operatives in a West Bank raid. The officials said the Islamic Jihad operatives were holed up inside a house in the town of Kabatiya. Troops surrounded the hideout early Thursday, and exchanged fire for about an hour with the gunmen inside. Islamic Jihad said one of the gunmen killed was Bilal Komel, 25, a commander long-wanted by the army. The second was identified as 19-year-old Ayed Zakarna. Meanwhile in the Gaza Strip, at least nine Kassam rockets and a Grad rocket were fired at Israel Wednesday overnight and Thursday morning. The rockets fell in open areas in the western Negev, none of them causing casualties or damage. On Wednesday, the IDF said it would escalate the pace of its operations in Gaza, after three soldiers were killed in a Hamas ambush Wednesday morning opposite Kibbutz Be'eri. In response to the attack, the air force carried out a series of strikes throughout Gaza, killing close to 20 Palestinians and wounding dozens more. Over 20 Kassam rockets were fired into Israel throughout the day on Wednesday. At least 8 Kassams were launched from Gaza Thursday morning. Khaled Abu Toameh contributed to this report.