Gaza’s Health Ministry says a Palestinian has been killed by Israeli gunfire during a protest along the territory’s frontier with Israel.
A picture taken in Dar Salah on July 26, 2019, shows a Palestinian protester waving the national flag as an Israeli border guard stands behind a fence during a demonstration after Friday prayers at the site of demolished buildings in the occupied West Bank. (AFP)
Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian on Friday afternoon during weekly protests along the border with Israel, Gaza health officials said. Forty others were wounded throughout the day.
The health ministry says 23-year-old Ahmed al Qarra was struck with a bullet in his stomach Friday and died at the hospital. It is the first fatality since June related to weekly protests along the perimeter fence separating Gaza from Israel.
Since March 2018, Palestinians in Gaza have been holding often violent demonstrations along the heavily-guarded Israeli border.
Israeli forces often fire on the demonstrators, saying they are seeking to prevent the border from being infiltrated.
At least 296 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza by Israeli fire since then, the majority during the border demonstrations.
Seven Israelis have been killed.
The protests have declined in intensity in recent months and Qura’s was the first death in weeks.
Right to return protests
Palestinians demand to return to their homes in historical Palestine from which they were driven in 1948 to make way for the establishment of Israel.
They also demand an end to Israel’s 12-year blockade on Gaza, which has destroyed the coastal enclave’s economy and deprived its roughly two million inhabitants of many basic commodities.
West Bank protests
The Israeli army used rubber bullets and teargas shells to disperse Palestinian protesters in the occupied West Bank, a Palestinian official said.
“The Israeli army attacked the weekly march [in the Kafr Qaddum town], using rubber bullets and teargas shells,” Murad Shtewi, the protest organiser, told Anadolu Agency.
Every Friday, Palestinians across the Israeli-occupied West Bank stage demonstrations to protest Israel’s decades-long policy of building Jewish-only settlements on the confiscated Palestinian land.
According to estimates, 640,000 Jewish settlers currently live on 196 different settlements built with the Israeli government’s approval and more than 200 settler “outposts” built without Israeli approval, throughout the West Bank.
International law regards the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, occupied territory and considers all Jewish settlement-building activity there to be illegal.
#Israel’s military and police laugh as they blow up #Palestinian house in #WestBank
The Friday protest came a day after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called Israel’s demolition of several dozen Palestinian homes on the outskirts of occupied East Jerusalem “ethnic cleansing.”
He said he will take steps to terminate all agreements with Israel.