Mortar shell hits Sha'ar Hanegev home

Three Gaza gunmen reported dead in two IAF strikes; IDF soldier lightly wounded by Palestinian sniper fire.

Gaza arrest op 224.88 (photo credit: AP [file])
Gaza arrest op 224.88
(photo credit: AP [file])
Mortar shells fired from Gaza pounded the western Negev on Wednesday - one hitting a home in the Sha'ar Hanegev region - as the IAF responded with air strikes that Palestinians said killed three gunmen. There were no reports of casualties from the mortar attacks, and police and firefighters were at the scene of the damaged home. Around 4 p.m., five mortar shells landed in open fields in the western Negev, causing no casualties or damage. The three gunmen were killed in two separate IAF strikes in the southern Gaza Strip in response to earlier mortar fire, Palestinians reported. Hamas said two of its members were killed in one of the strikes and four other gunmen wounded. In the earlier air strike, Islamic Jihad said one of its members was killed and three wounded. The army confirmed both strikes, emphasizing it was targeting terrorists firing mortar shells. Early Wednesday morning, an IDF soldier was lightly wounded by a Palestinian sniper during an operation in southern Gaza. The soldier, who was shot in the hand, was evacuated to Soroka Hospital in Beersheba for treatment. Givati Brigade and Armored Corps troops, under the cover of IAF helicopters, had been conducting a counter-terror operation since Tuesday night near the Sufa border crossing. The army reported several exchanges of fire between soldiers and Palestinian gunmen. Overnight Tuesday, IDF troops arrested 12 Palestinian terror suspects in West Bank operations. The detainees were transferred to security forces for further interrogation. AP contributed to this report