Israeli Navy gunboats fired at a Palestinian fishing boat near the Rafah shores killing one fisherman and sinking the ship.
A medical source in Rafah reported that Ziad Ismail Al Bardaweel, 22, died of his wounds before he was transferred to the Abu Yousef Al Najjar hospital in the city.
Eyewitnesses reported that an Israeli navy gunship fired at the Palestinian fishing boat which managed to sail back to the shore in Al Mawassi area, west of Rafah in an attempt to rescue Al Bardaweel.
The Israeli Naval forces claimed that the Palestinian boat entered a prohibited zone near the Egyptian regional borders.
“The navy ordered the boat to stop and fired at it when it failed to return to the permitted zone”, the Israeli navy claimed.
An Israeli source reported that a 10-meter fishing boat made its way from Egypt towards the Gaza Strip and entered the prohibited waters.
The source claimed that the Palestinian boat opened fired towards the Israeli navy ship, which fired back from the shore causing it to sink.
Also, an Israeli military source reported that the army launched a probe into the incident which was defined as “unusual”, and claimed that initial findings indicated that the Palestinian boat was trying to conduct an attack, or attempting to smuggle weapons.
The Palestinian Authority rejected the Israeli claims and said that the Israeli navy fired at the Palestinian fishing boat during a routine fishing cruise.
Three weeks ago, Israeli navy ships fired at a Palestinian fishing boat which allegedly entered prohibited waters, one 17-year-old boy was seriously injured.
In a separate incident, Israeli soldiers killed on Friday at night one Palestinian resident near in the southern part of the Gaza strip, two residents were injured.
A Palestinian security source reported that soldiers fired at three residents who attempted to enter Israel searching for work.