27 Mar 2010

Gaza border clashes prompt Israeli incursion

9:57 pm on 27 March 2010

Israeli tanks advanced briefly into the Gaza Strip following the worst clashes with Palestinians in more than a year. Two Israeli soldiers and up to four Palestinians are reported to have died.

Witnesses in Gaza said tanks and bulldozers moved towards the southern town of Khan Younis before withdrawing. They also said there had been firing from the Israeli navy along the Gaza coastline.

It is the first time Israeli soldiers have died in Gaza since Israel's 22-day offensive there more than a year ago.

Israel says the fighting started when its troops crossed into Gaza after spotting militants planting explosives along the border.

Reports from inside Gaza say the militants then tried to capture an Israeli soldier.