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Last Updated: Tuesday, 21 August 2007, 16:58 GMT 17:58 UK
Children killed in Israeli strike
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Two Palestinian children have been killed and three others wounded by Israeli forces in northern Gaza, Palestinian health officials have said.

The dead boys, aged 13 and 14, were close to an area from which militants had been firing rockets at Israel, the officials said.

Israel said its ground forces had fired upon two people who were seen near a rocket launcher near Beit Hanoun.

Earlier, three militants were killed in an Israeli air strike in southern Gaza.

Israeli soldiers also shot dead a militant near the al-Ein refugee camp in the West Bank town of Nablus. Reports say the gunman was linked to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a secular militant group.

Sniper rifles

The Palestinian militants killed in the air strike were 600m away from the border fence with Israel, near Khan Younis.

Hamas members inspect the wreckage of a vehicle destroyed in an Israeli missile strike in central Gaza on 20 August 2007
Six Hamas members were killed by an Israeli missile strike on Monday
An Israeli military statement said the aircraft fired on two attackers, but the army later said the Palestinian version, in which three were killed, appeared to be true.

The Israeli military said the men were going to fire on Israeli targets and that they belonged to a cell that had carried out such attacks in the past.

Israeli troops later crossed the border into Gaza and found three sniper rifles near the men's bodies, the military added.

Islamic Jihad said the men were its members on a mission against Israel.

Villagers later collected the bodies in blankets and took them to an ambulance in a nearby olive grove.

The attack came as Palestinians buried six members of Hamas who were killed by an Israeli missile strike near the Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza on Monday.




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