Four Israeli soldiers killed in Rafah building explosion

by IANS |

Tel Aviv, June 11 (IANS/DPA) Four Israeli soldiers have been killed in an explosion at a building in Rafah in the south of the Gaza Strip, according to the Israeli military.

The army announced the deaths of the four men, aged between 19 and 24, on Tuesday.

According to Israeli media reports, the soldiers had thrown an explosive device into a suspicious three-storey building in Rafah to detonate possible booby traps. However, an explosion only occurred when the troops had already entered the building.

The building collapsed and buried several soldiers underneath it. Seven soldiers were also injured, some of them seriously.

The army later found a tunnel entrance in the building and said they believed that a high-ranking member of the Islamist Palestinian organisation Hamas had been living there.

During the operation in the coastal strip, Israeli soldiers went from house to house looking for weapons, among other things. According to the military, many buildings have been rigged with explosives.

According to the army, the incident on Tuesday means that 650 soldiers have been killed and more than 3,700 others injured on the Israeli side since October 7.

According to the Palestinian health authority, more than 37,100 Palestinians have been killed in the ensuing war.

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