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Israeli Troops Raid Northern Gaza, 1 Palestinian Wounded


Israeli troops have raided the northern Gaza Strip, triggering a battle with militants that wounded a Palestinian teenager.

A small group of Israeli tanks and bulldozers crossed into Gaza Saturday near the town of Beit Hanoun.

Witnesses say the Israeli ground force tore up farm land, seized several buildings and detained their occupants. Palestinian militants fired at least one grenade at the Israeli troops and the two sides exchanged fire.

Palestinian medics say a 17-year-old Palestinian male was shot in the stomach and seriously wounded.

The Israeli military says troops detained nine Palestinians in the operation, which it describes as "routine activity" against "terrorist threats."

Israeli troops frequently raid Gaza to crack down on militants who fire rockets into southern Israel.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is under growing domestic pressure to order a large-scale military offensive in Gaza to stop the rocket fire. His Cabinet meets Sunday to consider further measures against Gaza militants.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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