update deskIsrael at War

Three Israeli soldiers wounded as a result of tunnel explosion in Rafah

In another incident, an “unidentified aerial object” from the Gaza Strip crossed into Israeli airspace.

Vehicles and military equipment as part of activity by the Israel Defense Forces in Rafah, in the southernmost Gaza Strip, on May 8, 2024. Credit: IDF.
Vehicles and military equipment as part of activity by the Israel Defense Forces in Rafah, in the southernmost Gaza Strip, on May 8, 2024. Credit: IDF.

Three soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces sustained moderate wounds when a booby-trapped tunnel shaft they had discovered in the Gaza Strip’s eastern Rafah area blew up, the army announced on Thursday night.

The wounded troops were evacuated and received medical treatment at a hospital in Israel, the IDF said. Their families have been informed.

In another incident on Thursday, an “unidentified aerial object” from the Strip crossed into Israeli airspace, falling in an open area, the military announced. There were no reports of damage or casualties.

Since Israel launched its limited operation against Hamas strongholds in Rafah on Monday, IDF forces have eliminated as many as 50 gunmen and located 10 tunnel shafts, Israel Hayom reported on Thursday.

The IDF is continuing raids on suspicious buildings in the area, while the 401st Brigade remains in control of the crossing with Egypt.

Some 150,000 Palestinian noncombatants have moved from Rafah to humanitarian zones—up from 50,000 on Wednesday—the daily said, adding that the evacuation was carried out without any problems.

The military has enough for the missions it has planned in Rafah and in other parts of Gaza, IDF Spokesman Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari stressed on Thursday night, after the United States threatened to cut off supplies.

“The IDF has armaments for the missions it is planning, and also for the missions in Rafah. We have what we need,” Hagari told reporters.

Overnight on Wednesday, Israeli Air Force jets attacked 25 targets as part of a renewed clearance operations in Gaza City’s Zeitoun area. IDF troops first took control of Zeitoun—once a major Hamas stronghold—in mid-November, but the terror group’s presence has since returned.

Among the targets were terrorist bases, attack tunnels, observation posts, sniper positions and other infrastructure. Ground troops of the IDF’s 99th Division have moved in to secure the area, the army said.

On Wednesday, at least eight terror rockets fired from Rafah hit near the Kerem Shalom humanitarian crossing with Israel, lightly injuring one IDF soldier. In addition, Hamas fired an unknown number of projectiles that failed to reach Israeli territory and fell short in the southern Strip.

Amid the ongoing Hamas rocket attacks, dozens of humanitarian aid trucks entered Gaza via the Kerem Shalom Crossing on Thursday.

“Israel keeps this crossing open, despite Hamas’s constant rocket fire toward the area,” the IDF said in a post on X. The military makes “every effort to provide a constant flow of aid to civilians while Hamas repeatedly shoots at Kerem Shalom,” the post noted.

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