JERUSALEM — The Israeli military struck a Gaza observation post on Sunday, killing three Palestinian militants after the troops found a bomb planted along the border.
The military said a tank fired a shell at the militant position in southern Gaza after Israeli troops detonated an explosive device found along the security fence with Gaza that was meant to harm soldiers patrolling the frontier.
The Palestinian Health Ministry said three people were killed, and the Islamic Jihad militant group identified them as its members.
Gaza militants regularly plant explosives near the sensitive frontier, occasionally harming Israeli soldiers. On Saturday, militants briefly infiltrated Israel and set a fire. In response, Israel struck Hamas positions.
"We will not tolerate attacks against us from the Gaza Strip," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at his weekly Cabinet meeting. "The army and the security forces are working around the clock to protect the State of Israel, Israeli citizens and Israel's borders."
The violence comes at a tense time along the frontier. More than 110 Palestinians have been killed in weekly protests that began March 30 and are aimed at lifting an Israeli and Egyptian blockade of Gaza imposed after Hamas seized power in 2007.
Hamas has vowed to continue the rallies. Israel says it is defending its border as well as its communities nearby. It accuses Hamas of trying to carry out attacks under the cover of protests.
The Associated Press