Hamas vows retaliation after Israel kills two gunmen

A brushfire near Kibbutz Re’im east of the Gaza border

At least two Palestinians were killed by Israeli gunfire in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, according to a Gaza Health Ministry spokesman.

"In response to terrorists shooting at IDF forces in the northern Gaza Strip, an IDF tank attacked the position belonging to the Hamas terror group where the attack originated", the army said.

It stated that the two fighters were part of a military training in "Asqalan" center, one of its training locations in northern Gaza, and that many Palestinians, including political leaders of Hamas, were in attendance.

"The group added that "DCIP evidence has determined on multiple occasions that children killed along the Gaza Strip perimeter did not pose a direct, mortal threat at the time of their death", while noting that under global law, the use lethal force is strictly reserved for instances when a" direct and mortal threat to life or of serious injury exists".

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The incident comes as the United Nations and Egypt continue to try to broker a deal for a lasting ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, which dominates Gaza. It then cuts to footage of a shell hitting the post and an explosion.

"The IDF is prepared to target any aggression against Israel and holds Hamas responsible for everything happening in and from the Gaza Strip", the spokesperson said.

The Islamist group's military wing, the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades, confirmed in a statement that the dead men were its fighters, naming them as Ahmed Murjan and Abdel-Hafez al-Silawi.

The "Great March of Return" protests sought the right of Palestinian refugees and their descendants, who according to the United Nations make up around two-thirds of Gaza's population, to return to their homeland inside what is now Israel.

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