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Israeli soldier killed hours after Gaza shelling Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Israeli soldier killed hours after Gaza shelling

Israel's army began shelling Gaza on Thursday in response to mortar attacks [Getty]

Date of publication: 1 December, 2017

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Police say an Israeli soldier was killed in a 'nationalistic' attack in Israel's south late on Thursday.

An Israeli soldier was stabbed to death late on Thursday in an attack that was believed to be a response to Israeli shelling of the Gaza Strip just hours earlier.

Israeli police described the killing, which took place in the southern town of Arad, as having "nationalistic" motivations and said that the assailant fled the scene.

A period of relative calm around Gaza was broken on Thursday when Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad launched 12 mortars at soldiers and construction crews along the Israel-Gaza border, Israel's army said.

The construction crews stationed in the border area are building a 60km-long underground anti-tunnel barrier.

In response, Israel carried out air and ground strikes on Gaza, reportedly hitting positions in the central region of the coastal strip.

According to Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Conricus, one position targeted belonged to Hamas, which controls Gaza, and another that was hit belonged to Islamic Jihad.

Palestinian medical sources cited by the Financial Times said that three Palestinians were wounded from the Israeli attack. 

In recent months, reconciliation efforts between Palestinian factions has been accompanied by a dip in violence between Israel and Palestinian groups in Gaza.

As part of the reconcilation, Hamas was supposed to hand over power in Gaza to the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority on Friday. The two parties recently asked Egypt, which is acting as mediator, to postpone the process until December 10.

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