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Published: Sat, April 14, 2018
Global Media | By Abel Hampton

Clashes erupt on Israel-Gaza border on third Friday of protests

Clashes erupt on Israel-Gaza border on third Friday of protests

Thirty-one Palestinians have been killed in the mass peaceful protests by Israeli forces.

Demonstrators demand that Palestinian refugees be granted the "right of return" to their towns and villages in historical Palestine from which they were driven in 1948 to make way for the new state of Israel.

Many protesters left for midday prayers but larger numbers are expected to gather in five spots along the border on Friday afternoon.

Gaza participants were said to be hurling Molotov cocktails and other explosives at Israeli troops stationed on the other side of the fence.

Several thousand people gathered Friday at one of the tent camps, east of Gaza City.

FILE COPY Israeli soldiers hold a position during clashes with Palestinian protestors.

The health officials said that among those hurt Friday was a Gaza journalist who was in serious condition with a bullet wound in the abdomen.

In the northern Gaza Strip, Sumaya Abu Awad, 36, attended the protest with her three daughters and son.

Gaza has endured a border blockade by Israel and Egypt since Hamas overran the territory in 2007, a year after winning Palestinian parliament elections.

"I was yelling to friends near the fence to leave and go back to our homes", he told AFP at his home in Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip.

Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum expressed his support of setting Israeli flags aflame. According to Israeli media sources, Palestinian resistance fighters tried to shoot at the jets with guns. The Palestinian people are the owners of the land and its decision makers.

Organizers were calling on Friday's demonstrators to burn Israeli flags and raise Palestinian ones.

The high death toll elicited expressions of alarm from the UN, European Union and Israeli opposition lawmakers.

"We came here in the camp of return in Rafah to show our parkour", said 27-year-old Naji Muammar.

The dead from last Friday included a journalist, Yasser Murtaja, who witnesses said was wearing a press vest at the time he was shot.

This brings up the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces since March 30 to 31.

OCHA reported 2,870 Palestinians wounded between 30 March and 11 April.

"When they shot me I was not throwing stones". There have been no Israeli casualties.

Israeli authorities explicitly referenced the two youths' participation in recent mass protests as the reason why the request was rejected.

Rights groups say Israel's open-fire regulations are unlawful because soldiers can use potentially lethal force against unarmed protesters.

Hamas officers have talked about in present days they want this week's protest to see a lot much less bloodshed and hope to keep up momentum setting up for Might 14, when the United States is anticipated to maneuver its Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Israel has accused Hamas of trying to carry out border attacks under the cover of large protests and says it will prevent a breach of the fence at all costs. "Under worldwide law, lethal force can only be used when unavoidable to protect against imminent threats to life".

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