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Middle East

Palestinian youth shot by Israeli troops dies

Palestinians waves Fatah movement flags and shout slogans during a rally the day before the 49th anniversary of the formation of the movement in the Unknown Soldier Square in Gaza City on December 31, 2013. AFP PHOTO/MOHAMMED ABED

GAZA CITY: A Palestinian youth shot by Israeli soldiers in the Gaza Strip has died of his wounds, a medical official said on Friday.

The 16-year-old, identified as Adnan Abu Khater, was shot on Thursday near the border fence in the northern Gaza Strip, sources on both sides said.

Ashraf al-Qudra, a spokesman for the emergency services in the Islamist Hamas-run enclave, said in a statement that Khater died of his wounds after soldiers shot him in the leg east of Jabaliya.

An Israeli army spokeswoman said of Thursday's incident that soldiers identified "a number of suspects" damaging the border fence.

She said the soldiers asked them to halt "numerous times but the suspects continued vandalising the fence".

"Soldiers then resorted to aiming fire at the individuals' lower extremities... and "reported one hit".

Later Thursday, Palestinians fired a projectile that hit near the border fence in Israel, a police spokeswoman said, causing no harm or damage.

Israeli warplanes early on Friday carried out a series of strikes against Gaza in response, the military said.

A statement from the army said that "in response to rocket fire toward Israel", its "aircraft targeted a terror infrastructure site in the central Gaza Strip and three concealed rocket launchers in the northern Gaza Strip".

"Direct hits were confirmed," the statement read.

There were no immediate reports of injuries in Gaza.

On Sunday, Palestinians said two people were wounded by Israeli tank fire in central Gaza.

Exchanges of fire between the sides peaked last Tuesday, when a sniper inside Gaza killed an Israeli repairing the border fence.

Israel retaliated against "terror sites" in Gaza with warplanes and tanks, killing a toddler and wounding at least six people.

 

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