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Israeli forces kill Hamas man in West Bank clash, bomb Gaza after rocket

site of israeli air strikes
A building reduced to rubble following the Israeli air strikes REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa

Israeli troops killed a Palestinian during an arrest raid in the occupied West Bank that touched off clashes with gunmen on Monday, medical officials said, while air strikes hit the Gaza Strip following a weekend rocket launch from the enclave.

The West Bank has seen violence simmer for months amid deadlocked Israeli-Palestinian diplomacy, stirring concern among foreign mediators over a possible spread to Gaza, whose Islamist Hamas rulers have mostly held their fire since a May 2021 war.

The Israeli army said troops entered Nablus, among flashpoint northern West Bank areas that have been a focus of its recent raids, to detain militants. The soldiers exchanged fire with gunmen during the raid, it said.

The Den of Lions militant group said it had ambushed the troops. Palestinian medical officials said a 21-year-old man was killed. Hamas claimed him as a member without saying whether he took part in the fighting. There were no Israeli casualties.

In Gaza, air strikes hit what the military described as an underground Hamas rocket foundry, calling this a response to a cross-border rocket launch on Saturday. That rocket was shot down by Israel’s Iron Dome interceptor without causing damage.

Palestinians disputed Israel’s account of the site struck overnight in Gaza City, saying it was a beachfront banquet hall.

Hamas cadres seized control of Gaza in 2007 and have fought several wars with Israel since. When smaller Gazan factions attack Israel, it generally retaliates against Hamas.

Saturday’s rocket launch was claimed by the Den of Lions, which has not previously been known to have a presence in Gaza.

Follow Monday’s air strikes, there were several new rocket launches against Israel, setting off sirens in its border towns. The Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine group said it fired those rockets, which caused no damage.

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