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Israeli Tanks Enter Gaza Town

February 23, 2003

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) _ About 20 Israeli tanks entered the Palestinian town of Beit Hanoun in the Gaza Strip early Sunday, residents said. The town is across from an Israeli village hit by rockets a few days earlier.

The tanks, accompanied by attack helicopters, headed for the center of town, firing on a house and blocking all access roads as soldiers imposed a curfew, confining residents to their homes, witnesses said. There were no reports of casualties.

The Israeli military would only say there was an operation in progress there.

Israeli incursions into Gaza have become frequent as Israel says it is moving against what it calls the ``terrorist infrastructure″ there, targeting militants, destroying houses and blowing up workshops where weapons allegedly are made.

Beit Hanoun is in the northeast corner of Gaza, opposite the Israeli town of Sderot, a few miles outside the territory. On Wednesday, Palestinians fired homemade Qassam rockets at Sderot, injuring an Israeli.

That followed an Israeli incursion into Gaza City during which 11 Palestinians were killed.

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