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One Palestinian dead, two injured in blast at south Gaza crossing

A 20-year-old Palestinian man was killed in Kerem Shalom crossing blast early Tuesday
A truck loaded with supplies enters the Gaza Strip from Israel through the Kerem Shalom crossing in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip on 5 November (AFP)
One Palestinian man was killed and two others injured on Tuesday when an explosion hit a fuel truck at a crossing in southern Gaza, a news agency reported citing Ashraf al-Qudra, the emergency services spokesman.
 
Qudra told Agence France-Presse the 20-year-old Bahlul fuel company employee had been killed in the blast, which took place on the Palestinian side of the Kerem Shalom commercial crossing.
 
Officials were not immediately able to say whether it was the result of an accident or a deliberate attack, AFP reported.
 
The crossing was reopened a week ago after a temporary closure in response to what Israeli authorities said was a rocket attack from Gaza into southern Israel.
 
Gaza routinely buys supplies of diesel, gasoline and cooking gas from Israel that are transported through Kerem Shalom, the only commercial crossing into the strip, according to AFP. 
 
The fuel is bought from Israel by the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority, which also facilitates the delivery because Hamas, the territory's de facto rulers, do not recognise Israel and do not have any direct dealings with its officials.
 
Gaza has seven border crossings linking it to the outside world, six of which are controlled by Israel, while the seventh – Rafah – is controlled by Egypt and was closed after a 24 October attack killed 31 Egyptian soldiers.
 
Israel sealed most of its border crossings with Gaza in June 2007 after the Islamist movement Hamas wrestled control of the territory from the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority.
 
Israeli authorities allow the Kerem Shalom crossing, which links Gaza to Israel and Egypt, to operate for commercial purposes including allowing fuel and other commodities into the blockaded Gaza Strip.
 
A truce deal brokered in August by Egypt between Israel and Palestinian groups in Gaza called for reopening the Strip’s border crossings, which, if implemented, would end the seven-year Israeli blockade of the territory.