Suicide bomber attacks Hamas checkpoint in Gaza


Interior ministry says IS member blew himself up at security checkpoint, killing one other person

Palestinian members of Hamas security forces stand at security checkpoint in Gaza City (AFP)
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Last update: 
Thursday 17 August 2017 8:14 UTC

Gaza officials said a suicide bomber blew himself up at a checkpoint at the border with Egypt early on Thursday morning.

According to the Interior Ministry, the suspect  - an alleged Islamic State (IS) group member - killed himself and seriously wounded at least one other person. Hospital officials later said that one person brought to them for treatment had died.

Initial reports said that a person travelling with the suspect also sustained injuries.

"Early this morning security forces stopped two people approaching the southern border [with Egypt]," said an interior ministry spokesman in the Hamas-run territory.

"One of them blew himself up, killing him, injuring the other and a number of security officials." The wounded were taken to hospital for treatment, he added.

Eyewitnesses said hundreds of security forces were deployed along the border after the explosion.

Gaza security sources said they suspected the attacker was a religious militant.

Hamas has run Gaza for a decade, but have been regularly criticised by militant groups in the strip.

It marks the first time that a Palestinian has blown himself up against Gaza security forces.

Egypt has alleged that Hamas has given tacit support for the IS insurgency in North Sinai. To rebut that claim, Hamas officials have increased security at checkpoints.