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Israeli troops kill two Palestinians in Gaza

Two Palestinians trying to cross over from the Gaza Strip into Israel to find work were shot dead by Israeli soldiers overnight, Palestinian medical sources said on Friday.

india Updated: Feb 24, 2006 15:17 IST

Two Palestinians trying to cross over from the Gaza Strip into Israel to find work, were shot dead by Israeli soldiers overnight, Palestinian medical sources said on Friday.

Suleiman al-Hamaydah and Mohammed Dukhan, both aged around 20, were shot dead in the Deir al-Balah area near the security barrier separating the southern Gaza Strip and Israel.

Another Palestinian national was also shot at and wounded, sources added.

An Israeli army spokesman said that troops had spotted four suspect figures near the barrier and opened fire.

"One Palestinian was killed and another was arrested ... A third who crawled towards the barrier was apparently hit," he said.

The latest deaths brought the overall toll since the September 2000 start of the Palestinian uprising 4,967. The vast majority of those killed have been Palestinians.

The spokesman confirmed that the man arrested had not been armed.

Meanwhile, medical sources and witnesses said three other Palestinians were injured, when an Israeli drone aircraft fired two missiles at two vehicles near Beit Lahyia in the northern Gaza Strip.

The Israeli military said the air strike had targeted "terrorists who were preparing to fire rockets", adding that the force of the blast indicated it would have been carrying explosives.

First Published: Feb 24, 2006 15:17 IST