Ma'an News Agency
December 7, 2009 - 1:00am

Israeli forces shot and killed an Israeli citizen near a Gaza border crossing overnight, an official said.

An Israeli military spokeswoman told Ma'an that forces opened fire at the man, a civilian in his 30s, as he attempted to enter northern Gaza near the Erez crossing early Monday.

The spokeswoman added that when Defense Ministry guards identified seeing the man they first fired warning shots but ultimately targeted him when he failed to respond. The forces aimed at his lower body, she said.

Police sappers were called in to search the man's body for explosives or other weapons, the official added, before an Israeli Magen David Adom ambulance transported him to a hospital, where he died.

The spokeswoman raised the possibility that the man was mentally unstable.

The army routinely opens fire on Palestinian civilians who approach the military demarcation in northern Gaza, but Monday morning's incident was the first in recent memory in which one of the country's own citizens was killed after approaching the same area on the opposite side.


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