Seven killed in IAF strikes in Gaza Strip

Army: Terrorists were on way to launch rockets; two armed Hamas men were killed in another air strike.

IAF aircraft targeted a Kassam launch cell in the Gaza Strip late Saturday evening, the IDF reported. Palestinian sources reported that five terrorists were killed in the attack. The army did not confirm the reported number of casualties. Earlier Saturday, an armed Hamas member was killed in another IAF strike in the Gaza City area, Palestinian security sources said. The Palestinians claimed that the man, 22-year-old Aimed Abu-Amar, was killed by a missile fired from an IAF helicopter. Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Saturday that he saw Hamas and its leaders as directly responsible for Saturday morning's attack at the Kerem Shalom crossing, which wounded 13 IDF soldiers. Barak, touring the crossing with IDF Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gabi Ashkenazi, expressed his appreciation for the tracking unit that had been on patrol at the time of the attack as well as for the … commander. The defense minister said that the soldiers' response had prevented a "strategic terror attack." On Thursday, army forces foiled an apparent infiltration attempt at the crossing, firing at three Palestinian gunmen who moved into the Palestinian side of the crossing. One of the gunmen was shot and killed, and one injured.