July 21, 2010 / 2:21 PM / 9 years ago

Israeli shelling kills Gaza militant, wounds seven

Palestinian women stand at the bedside of a wounded child at Beit Hanoun hospital in the northern Gaza Strip after an Israeli shelling July 21, 2010. REUTERS/Ismail Zaydah

GAZA (Reuters) - Israeli shellfire killed a Palestinian militant and wounded seven people, including a 10-year-old girl, in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, Palestinian medical workers and an official with a militant group said.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said soldiers opened fire on militants suspected of preparing to fire a rocket at them. A security source said the troops fired a tank shell.

Officials with a militant group active in Gaza said the dead man was one of their members. Medical officials said one of those wounded in the attack was a 10-year-old girl. No other details were immediately released.

Cross-border violence has abated on the Israel-Gaza frontier since a major Israeli offensive in early 2009, but Israel has staged periodic assaults which it said were in response to rocket and mortar fire by militants in the coastal territory.

A week ago Israeli shellfire killed a Palestinian woman in Gaza. Israel said it had opened fire on militants suspected of preparing to mount an attack.

Israel promised the United Nations this week to try and avoid civilian casualties in future wars.

Reporting by Saleh Salam and Tom Perry; Writing by Allyn Fisher-Ilan; editing by Jon Boyle

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