Egyptian border guard killed in clash with Israeli troops

The incident reportedly occurred as a result of an exchange of fire at Rafah crossing

A member of Egypt’s security forces has been killed in a shooting incident near the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza, Cairo’s military spokesperson has said, adding that an investigation is underway.

According to Reuters, citing Egyptian security sources, a soldier stationed on a watchtower had reacted to seeing an armored vehicle carrying Israeli troops crossing a boundary line near the border in a pursuit and killing several Palestinians.

The soldier opened fire and Israeli forces fired back, killing him, the sources said. This resulted in an exchange of gunfire between the sides, with several Israeli soldiers and an Egyptian wounded in the clash.

Israel confirmed that a “shooting incident” had taken place on the Egyptian border on Monday, saying that it was “under review” and that “discussions are being held with the Egyptians.”

The Israel Defense Forces have been present in Rafah since it launched an assault on the densely populated southern Gaza city earlier this month.

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Israeli tanks reportedly reach center of Rafah

The Jewish state has pushed forward with its plans despite widespread international concern that the attack would result in mass civilian casualties. The Israeli government has claimed that a ground operation in the area was required to eliminate Hamas.

Its tanks shelled a tent camp in an evacuation area west of Rafah and killed at least 21 people on Tuesday, according to Gaza health authorities.

The attack comes two days after an Israeli strike at another camp in Rafah for displaced persons, which killed an estimated 45 Palestinians. The death toll in the Sunday night strike reportedly included 12 women and eight children.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called that airstrike “a tragic mistake.” Israel said its attack was based on “precise intelligence” and that it had killed two “senior” Hamas officials.

Egypt was the first Arab country to establish diplomatic relations with Israel, in 1979. Security incidents on their shared border have been rare.

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Rafah refugee camp strike a ‘tragic mistake’ – Netanyahu

However, in October 2023, two weeks after the escalation of the Gaza conflict, Israel apologized after one of its tanks “accidentally” fired and hit an Egyptian post near the countries’ border, injuring several Egyptian border guards.

In June last year, three Israeli soldiers and an Egyptian security officer were killed in a clash at the border.

Lately, Egypt has accused Israel of holding up deliveries of humanitarian aid to Gaza, which Israel denies.

More than 36,000 Palestinians have been killed in over seven months of fighting, according to local Hamas-run authorities.

Israel declared war on Hamas after its militants raided southern Israeli settlements on October 7, leaving some 1,200 people dead and taking more than 200 hostages. Dozens of captives were subsequently released as part of prisoner exchanges, during a weeklong truce in November.

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