Israeli soldier killed on Gaza border

An Israeli soldier has been killed after a Palestinian gunman crossed the border from Gaza early this morning.

The Palestinian was also killed after Israeli forces responded to his infiltration, which may have been made in an attempt to kidnap an IDF soldier.

Golani Staff-Sergeant Netanel Moshiashvili, a 21-year-old from Ashkelon, was named as the dead soldier by Israeli media. He was a member of the Golani Brigade 12th Battalion which was patrolling Israel’s southern borders.

In a statement the IDF said: “A terrorist who was identified infiltrating Israel from the southern Gaza Strip opened fire at IDF soldiers, who responded with fire. During the exchange of fire, the terrorist was killed, thus preventing a terror attack on Israeli civilians.”

IDF spokeswoman Avital Leibovich suggested Hamas was responsible for the attack, but no group has yet claimed responsibility. Other sources claimed the Palestinian gunman was a member of Islamic Jihad.

There were reports that Israeli forces responded to the killing by targeting a vehicle carrying three suspected terrorists in Gaza.

Last updated: 11:53am, June 1 2012