More Israeli troops to enter Rafah as Gaza pier anchored

Israel’s military said Thursday that five soldiers had been killed by friendly fire in Gaza’s north, where intense fighting has resumed more than seven months into the war.

The troops were killed on Wednesday at 7 pm (1600 GMT) in the area of Jabalia refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip, the military said in a statement.

“Five soldiers of the 202nd Paratrooper Battalion were killed last night in a mass casualty incident as a result of fire by our forces,” the military statement said, adding that seven other troops were wounded.

Two tanks in the area, which has seen particularly fierce fighting in recent days, opened fire on a house used by the Israeli battalion’s deputy commander, the military said.

“The shooting consisted of two tank shells,” it added.

“From the initial investigation… it appears that the tank fighters, from the ultra-Orthodox paratrooper company Hetz, identified a gun barrel coming out of one of the windows in the building, and directed each other to shoot at the building,” the statement said.

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