Palestinian riots in the Beit Hanoun area of the Gaza Strip..
(photo credit: KOBI RICHTER/TPS)
Thousands of Palestinians demonstrated along the Gaza border fence with Israel Friday afternoon as a tense calm has been holding in the South.
Local reports put the number of demonstrators as 10,000 Palestinians in five main spots along the fence with Israel.
According to the Palestinian Ministry of Health 84 people were injured in clashes with IDF troops who were responding to the violent protests with riot dispersal means. Five Palestinians were reported to be in critical condition after being was shot by troops east of Gaza City.
The border protests began on March 30th and has seen over half a million people violently demonstrating along the security fence with Israel demanding an end to the 12-year long blockade, congregating at points along the border range between several thousand to 45,000 each day.
The one year anniversary of the border riots last week saw some 40,000 Palestinians demonstrate along the border fence and saw three Palestinians killed by IDF fire.
Last week Israel expanded the allowed fishing zone for Gazans to a range of between 22 km. to 28 km. after it was completely closed the week before as the result of a long-range rocket fired by Gazan terrorists, which destroyed a family home in central Israel, wounding eight civilians.
The rocket attack sparked a round of violence between Israel and Hamas and led to Israel deploying three infantry brigades and an artillery unit to enhance the Southern Command, as well as canceling the leave of all combat units currently assigned to the command.
The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) said that the expansion of the fishing zone is part of a policy to prevent humanitarian deterioration in the Gaza Strip and of a “policy that distinguishes between terrorism and the civilian population.”
“The implementation of the move is conditional on the fishermen in Gaza honoring the agreements. It will not be possible to deviate from the ranges that were agreed upon, and any deviation will be handled accordingly,” COGAT said.
Meanwhile, a Palestinian teenager was injured in the West Bank after he was hit by a car driven by an Israeli. According to Wafa news, 15 year-old Aysar Mahmoud Hushia was critically injured after he was run over near the village of Tuwanah, east of Yatta.
He was evacuated to hospital for medical treatment.
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