At least four Palestinian men have lost their lives and several others sustained injuries after Israeli battle tanks struck the southern part of the Gaza Strip as the Tel Aviv regime presses ahead with its acts of aggression against the besieged Palestinian coastal sliver.
The spokesman for the Gaza Ministry of Health, Ashraf al-Qidra, said in a statement that the Israeli tanks targeted a group of civilians in al-Awdah refugee camp east of Rafah city, located 30 kilometers south of Gaza City, on Saturday afternoon.
He identified three of those killed as Ayed Saleh al-Hamaydeh, Amjad Hosni al-Qatros and Hisham Mohammed Abdelal.
The injured Palestinians have reportedly been transferred to Martyr Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital in Rafah to receive medical treatment.
On April 11, Israeli battle tanks targeted several positions of the Palestinian Hamas resistance movement in the Gaza Strip.
The Israeli military, in a statement released on Wednesday, asserted that the shelling came after Palestinians allegedly detonated a bomb near an Israeli construction vehicle adjacent to the border fence between the Gaza Strip and the occupied Palestinian territories, which caused neither injury nor damage.
The Israeli military frequently bombs the Gaza Strip, with civilians being the main target of such attacks.
Israel has also launched several wars on the Palestinian coastal sliver, the last of which began in early July 2014. The military aggression, which ended on August 26, 2014, killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians. Over 11,100 others were also wounded in the war.
The Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli siege since June 2007. The blockade has caused a decline in the standards of living as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty.
The Israeli regime denies about 1.8 million people in Gaza their basic rights, such as freedom of movement, jobs with proper wages as well as adequate healthcare and education.Separately, an Israeli soldier was killed and three others wounded when their Merkava Mark III tank rolled down a ravine on the Egyptian border.
The Israeli ministry of military affairs said in a statement that the incident occurred after troops were called to a smuggling attempt near the Nitzana border crossing between the occupied territories and Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.
The statement added that the tank deviated from its planned path while moving towards the scene, and rolled some three meters down a gorge.