Three Israel Defense Forces soldiers were killed while uncovering the entrance to a tunnel shaft in a home in Gaza.
The house and the tunnel shaft were booby trapped with explosive devices that were detonated against the soldiers on Wednesday, the IDF said in a statement. Several soldiers also were injured in the incident.
The Israeli death toll in the current operation in Gaza stands at 53 soldiers and three civilians, including one foreign worker.
Also Wednesday, following the end of a five-hour Security Cabinet meeting, Israeli media cited unnamed diplomatic sources as saying that the Cabinet instructed the IDF to continue its action against Hamas and other terrorist groups in Gaza and to work to destroy the tunnels leading from Gaza to Israel.