Gaza municipality is the second biggest councils on the Palestinian territories in regards to the population, with around 1,800 employees and the highest revenues on the level of the Strip.
An Israeli army spokesman said a Palestinian infiltrated the border near Khan Younis and engaged an army patrol moderately injuring an officer and lightly wounding two soldiers. "We also targeted a Hamas military post in Gaza", the military said in a statement. The Palestinians accused Israel of using excessive force.
Palestinians identified the slain gunman as Hani Abu Salah, a member of the armed wing of Hamas, the Islamic militant group that rules Gaza.
Commenting on that incident, the Israeli military said thousands of Palestinians had gathered along the frontier and that some in the crowd hurled explosive devices and grenades towards the border fence.
Israeli security forces shot dead a Palestinian man early on Thursday after he reportedly attempted to cross into Israel from Gaza, according to Israel's army.
Eyewitnesses in Gaza reported that the Israeli occupation army fired two shells and light bombs at the border area east of Khuza'a town in Khan Younis after hearing the sound of gunfire. However, an army spokesperson said the military believes the attacker was acting alone and not on orders from Hamas.
Tensions have been on the rise over the past year, amidst weekly demonstrations near the fence between Gaza and Israel, known as "the Great March of Return", which protest the crippling 12-year blockade Israel has imposed.
Israel media report that the IDF's plan in the event of a confrontation with Hamas in Gaza, (generally viewed by defense officials as inevitable) is not to destroy the terror group, but to hit it with a strong blow.
"We have strengthened our preparedness for a possible campaign in Gaza.which could break out any day", the IDF tweeted.