Israeli troops kill four Palestinians as Gaza protest resumes

Tear gas canisters are fired by Israeli troops at Palestinian demonstrators during a protest marking al-Quds Day, (Jerusalem Day), at the Israel-Gaza border east of Gaza City June 8, 2018. REUTERS/Mohammed Salem

GAZA – Israeli troops killed four Palestinians and wounded hundreds of others on Friday with live fire and tear gas used against protesters at the Gaza border, medics said.

Israel said it was defending the frontier against crowds that threw stones and burned tyres in an attempt to cross. It said at one location at least two Palestinian militants fired guns at its forces and others had thrown grenades.

The protests tapered off around sunset when many demonstrators left border camps for the evening meal that breaks their fast during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

The Palestinians killed on Friday were three adult men and a 15-year-old boy, Gaza medics said. Of 620 people wounded, 120 were from live fire, they said.

Friday’s deaths bring the total number of Palestinians killed at the Gaza border to 124 since protests there began on March 30, including 60 people killed in a single day last month.

Israel’s deadly tactics in confronting the protests have drawn international condemnation.

Palestinians say the protests are a popular outpouring of rage against Israel by people demanding the right to return to homes their families fled or were driven from on Israel’s founding 70 years ago.

Israel says the demonstrations are organized by the Islamist group Hamas that controls the Gaza Strip and denies Israel’s right to exist. Israel says Hamas has intentionally provoked the violence, a charge Hamas denies.

 

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