Several Palestinians were injured as thousands of Gazans took part in the Great Return Marches along the border fence between Gaza and Israel on Friday.
The Palestinian Health Ministry reported that seven Palestinians were injured by rubber bullets and live fire by IDF troops stationed along the fence.
The IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said that around 4,000 Palestinians in several locations along the fence are burning tires and throwing stones and explosive devices towards troops. In addition,a number of attempts by Gazans to approach the security fence were identified by troops who used riot control measures against the rioters.
The Gaza border protests began last March and have seen over half a million people violently demonstrating along the security fence, demanding an end to the 12-year-long blockade.
According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, 250 Palestinians, including 59 children and 10 women, have been killed by Israeli forces since the beginning of the Great Return marches.
Friday marks the fourth Friday and final prayers held during the month of Ramadan and the beginning of the holiday of Laylat al-Qadr which is usually observed on the 26th night of Ramadan set to begin tonight. The holiday commemorates the night that the Koran was first revealed to Mohammed.
Tens of thousands of Muslim worshippers arrived at Temple Mount in Jerusalem , Police Spokesperson reported on Friday, police units were mobilized in the area of the Old City to prevent any attacks.
On Friday afternoon a Palestinian teenager was shot dead by IDF troops as he tried to climb the security barrier close near Wadi Abu al-Hummus in order to bypass the bypass the Mazmuriya checkpoint east of Bethlehem towards Jerusalem.
He was identified by the Palestinian Health Ministry in a statement as 16 year-old Abdullah Louai Ghaith, another Palestinian identified as 21-year-old Mu’men Abu Tbaish, was rushed to hospital after “sustaining a critical injury.”
“Israeli forces opened fire on two Palestinians who attempted to cross the area of Wadi Abu al-Hummus, near the villages of al-Khas and al-Numan, hitting 16-year-old Abdullah Louai Gheith with bullets in the heart and killing him,” the ministry was quoted by WAFA news as saying.
Also on Friday Israeli troops detained a 40 year-old Palestinian man who was found to be carrying a knife as he tried to cross the Qalandiya checkpoint north of Jerusalem.
The tensions came hours after a 19-year-old Palestinian from the West Bank stabbed a 47-year-old man and a 16-year-old in the Old City of Jerusalem in the early morning around 6.20 AM.
The first stabbing attack which happened near Damascus Gate left a 50 year-old man in critical condition with stab wounds to his head and neck. He was evacuated unconscious to Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center for treatment.
The attack then ran away and stabbed a 16 year-old near the Hurva Synagogue in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City, leaving the teenager in moderate condition after he was stabbed in the back. He was evacuated to Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem.
The attacker was identified by the Palestinian Health Ministry in Ramallah as 18 year-old Yossouf Vajaya from the village of Abwein outside Ramallah, and according to the Israel police had come to Temple Mount to pray for Ramadan.
While Jerusalem’s Old City has seen a number of stabbing attacks in recent years, there has been relatively calm in the past several months. Israel allows Palestinian men over the age of 40 as well as women and children under the age of 13 to enter East Jerusalem in order to attend Friday prayers.
Jerusalem Post Staff contributed to this article.