Gaza's Health Ministry said four Palestinians were killed and several others injured Saturday in a mysterious blast in the southeast part of the Gaza Strip.
The explosion struck a three-wheeled vehicle near one of the five protest camps the Palestinians have set up along the volatile Gaza-Israel border in recent weeks.
In a statement, ministry spokesman Ashraf al-Qidra said that medical teams are still searching the area.
The reason for the explosion near the city of Rafah was not immediately known. The Israeli military said it was unaware of any activity in the area of the blast.
The military said a fire broke out near a security fence in the southern Gaza border and it was checking its cause, according to Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth.
Meanwhile, the Islamic Jihad militant group said in a statement that the incident is an apparent accidental explosion, along with other local reports backing their statement.
Islamic Jihad's armed wing said four of its fighters had been killed during "preparations", without giving further details.
The men died when a tuk tuk vehicle exploded a few hundred meters from the border with Israel, an AFP correspondent at the scene said.
Islamic Jihad, which is supported by Iran, has fought alongside Hamas against Israel in multiple wars, most recently in 2014.
Several local Palestinian media outlets said Israeli forces fired tank shells at a position of Palestinian group Hamas east of Rafah, killing four people.
The explosion comes a day after another mass gathering along the border area in which thousands of Palestinians, some burning Israeli flags and torching tires, staged a protest against the ten-year-old blockade.
One protester was killed Friday, bringing the death toll to 35 since the protests began, with more than 1,500 wounded by Israeli fire since March 30.
The marches have been organized by Gaza's Hamas rulers, but large turnouts on two preceding Fridays were also driven by Gaza's dire living conditions and desperation among the territory's 2 million residents who have been enduring a crippling border closure by Israel and Egypt since 2007.
Rights groups have described the Israeli military's open-fire regulations as unlawful, saying they permit soldiers to use potentially lethal force against unarmed protesters. Israel has accused Hamas rulers of using the protests as a cover for attacks and says snipers only target the main instigators.
Hamas leaders have sent mixed signals about whether they plan an eventual mass breach of the border fence. The protests are to culminate in a large rally on May 15, the 70th anniversary of Israel's creation. Palestinians mourn the event as their "nakba," or catastrophe, when hundreds of thousands were uprooted in the 1948 war over Israel's creation.
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