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Gaza militants kill 5 Israeli soldiers

29 July 2014, 13:19

Jerusalem - Gaza militants who crossed into Israel via a tunnel killed five Israeli soldiers in a gun battle near the community of Nahal Oz close to the border with the Gaza Strip, the military said on Tuesday.

"[The] soldiers were killed during combat when terrorists attempted to execute an attack using a tunnel shaft, which led from the Gaza Strip to Nahal Oz. The soldiers thwarted the attempt by identifying the squad and neutralising one of the [terrorists]," the military said in a statement.

The incident on Monday raised to 10 the number of military fatalities for the day.

Fifty-three Israeli soldiers have been killed since Israel launched its offensive on Gaza on 8 July in which almost 1 100 Gazans, mostly civilians, have died in the conflict.

Israel launched its Gaza offensive on 8 July, saying its aim was to halt rocket attacks by Hamas and its allies. It later ordered a land invasion to find and destroy the warren of Hamas tunnels that criss-crosses the border area.

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