Israeli troops open fire on third Gaza mass protest, injuring dozens

Israeli troops open fire on third Gaza mass protest, injuring dozens
2 min read
13 April, 2018
Israeli soldiers have opened fire with live ammunition on Gazans gathered for a third consecutive Friday of mass protests, injuring at least 30 people so far.
No Israelis have been killed or injured since the weekly mass protests began [Getty]
Israeli soldiers have opened fire with live ammunition on Gazans gathered for a third consecutive Friday of mass protests, injuring at least 30 people so far.

At least 30 protesters have been injured on Friday by Israeli sniper fire as they approached the border fence with Israel, according to the spokesman of the health ministry in Gaza.

The spokesman said over 100 people have been injured by tear gas inhalation, including 10 medical staff.

Israeli troops have killed 34 Palestinians and wounded over 1,000 others with live fire since the mass protests began on March 30, prompting widespread international condemnation.

A Palestinian man was shot and killed at a border protest campsite on Thursday by Israeli fire.

Several thousand Gazans have gathered at various locations after the main weekly Muslim prayers to demonstrate.

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

At a protest camp there, a large Israeli flag was placed on the ground for demonstrators to walk on.

Marchers have been protesting against a crippling decade-old blockade on the Palestinian enclave and demanding the right of return of Palestinian refugees to what is now Israel.

Last week, protesters burned mounds of tyres, sending plumes of smoke into the air in the border area. Israeli soldiers used large fans in a bid to push the smoke away.

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

The first two Fridays - with far less on intervening days - saw tens of thousands gather near the border with Israel at five locations.

Israel accuses Hamas, the Islamist movement that runs Gaza and with whom it has fought three wars since 2008, of using the protests as cover to carry out violence despite their peaceful nature.

No Israelis have been killed or injured since the weekly mass protests began.

Rights groups say military's open-fire orders are unlawful.