Booby-Trap Kills Three Soldiers in Rafah

( – Three Israel Defense Forces (IDF) troops were killed during combat operations on May 28 when a booby trap was triggered in a building in Rafah.

Another three soldiers were seriously wounded in the incident, according to the IDF. The soldiers were reportedly hit by an explosive device that was set off in the building.  All three soldiers killed served in the 50th Battalion of the Nahal Brigade. The three staff sergeants killed by the booby trap explosive have been named as 20-year-old Amir Galilove of Shimshit; 21-year-old Uri Bar-Or, of Midreshet Ben-Gurion; and 21-year-old Ido Appel of Tzofar.

On May 30, the IDF released new information stating the explosive trap was located in a tunnel beneath a medical clinic in Rafah. They added that the area is also home to a United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) school.

The incident highlights challenges faced by IDF ground forces when infiltrating buildings held by Hamas forces. The soldiers’ deaths bring the death toll of IDF troops in the Israeli military’s ground offensive in Gaza and along the border to 291.

Israel has announced that it will continue with limited operations in Gaza’s southern city of Rafah along the border with Egypt. Tensions between Israel and Egypt have increased since Tel Aviv went ahead with its controversial assault on Rafah and an Egyptian soldier was killed on the border in an incident involving troops from both countries, according to reports on May 27. Israeli and Egyptian forces are investigating the border incident.

The bombardment of Rafah, described as the final stronghold of Hamas by Israel, has prompted criticism from world leaders, including Israel’s allies, due to the city housing a million refugees displaced by the Gaza conflict. Israel’s leaders argue, however, that ground troops must enter the city to dismantle the operations of Hamas and release the remaining hostages who were kidnapped in the October 7 attack.

The IDF has claimed to have demolished a major Hamas tunnel near the Rafah crossing since its assault, and Washington has stated that it is making progress with a hostage deal with support from Tel Aviv. On May 30, Gaza’s Health Ministry, which operates under Hamas, reported that 53 people had been killed and 357 had been injured in the enclave within the last 24 hours.

Copyright 2024,