Eight Israeli soldiers have been killed in a blast that engulfed their armoured vehicle in southern Gaza, in the biggest loss of life for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in a single incident since January, Report informs referring to The Guardian.

The deaths came amid continuing fighting around Rafah in which at least 19 Palestinians were killed in Israeli strikes.

According to the IDF, the squad of combat engineers were in a convoy of half a dozen armoured vehicles returning from a mission at about 5am on Saturday morning in the Tal al-Sultan area of the southern Gaza city when their vehicle was destroyed.