At least five Palestinians killed due to 'mysterious explosion' during protest in eastern Gaza Strip
The Gaza health ministry said in a press statement sent to The New Arab that "body parts of five young men arrived at Al-Shifa Medical Hospital after an explosive device exploded on them in the Gaza border area."
"Twenty-five others were wounded, including two in serious condition, were also transferred to the hospital to receive their treatment," the ministry added.
Before the explosion, dozens of young men headed to the eastern border to protest against the Israeli army stationed there. Raising the Palestinian flags, the protest was organised by the national and Islamic Palestinian factions to condemn the Oslo Accords signed between Israel and the Palestinian Authorities in 1993.
Once the protestors reached the eastern fence, the Israeli army soldiers opened fire and lobbed tear gas bombs, according to Palestinian security sources.
Local eyewitnesses told TNA that they then heard a "large explosion" without knowing where it was coming from.
After the reports of casualties, Gaza-based factions quickly accused Israel of targeting the young protesters and killing them.
For its part, the Israeli army claimed that its soldiers "resorted to dispersal measures" after Palestinians "hurled explosive devices and grenades" at the barrier. The Israelil army further claimed that explosive devices were placed by the Palestinian protestors during the gathering in an attempt to hurt Israelis.