Jerusalem: Two Palestinian militants infiltrated into Israel on Friday from the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip but were caught in a firefight with Israeli troops, Israeli military officials said.
There were unconfirmed reports the militants died in the gunbattle.
The military spokesman`s office confirmed an exchange of fire between an unspecified number of gunmen and soldiers near Israel`s Kissufim crossing with Gaza. It did not say on which side of the border the clashes took place.
Other military officials said the gunmen entered Israeli territory, where they were quickly surrounded by troops. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to disclose details of the firefight.
The military spokesman`s office said it could not confirm an Army Radio report that the militants were killed in the gunbattle. It said it was not aware of any other gunmen having eluded troops.
Hamas security officials confirmed two militants had been sent on an operation to attack Israel and clashed with soldiers near the Israel-Gaza border. The radio station of the Islamic Jihad militant group said its fighters had been sent on an unspecified mission.
Hamas security officials said Israeli tanks crossed into Gaza after the infiltration and fired three shells.
The military had no information on that report.