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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 22 August 2018

Gaza teen dies of his wounds after being shot by Israeli military

Two more Palestinians were shot in the head during weekly protests at the border

Palestinian protesters run for cover from Israeli tear-gas during the clashes with Israeli troops near the border with Israel in eastern Gaza Strip, on Friday July 27. EPA
Palestinian protesters run for cover from Israeli tear-gas during the clashes with Israeli troops near the border with Israel in eastern Gaza Strip, on Friday July 27. EPA

A 17-year-old boy died on Saturday after he was shot by the Israeli military during protests along the border a day earlier, the Palestinian health ministry said.

Mohmen Al Hams was hit in the chest during demonstrations near the southern Gaza town of Rafah.

Two more Palestinians died on Friday while dozens more were injured, the ministry added. Witnesses said the Israeli military opened fire as a group of protesters rushed to the border.

A 14-year-old boy was shot in the head, east of Rafah, near where Mohmen Al Hams was shot.

East of the city of Khan Yunis, a 43-year-old man, identified as Ghazi Abu Mustafa, was killed by Israeli soldiers. A witness said Mr Mustafa has sustained leg wounds in a previous protest, and he was sitting about 250 metres away when he was shot in the head.

More than 80 Palestinians were wounded by Israeli fire, the Gaza health ministry said.

The Israeli military said they were using riot disposal measures after 7,000 Palestinians threw rocks and rolled burning tires at soldiers.

"Troops are responding with riot dispersal means and firing in accordance with the rules of engagement," a statement said, without elaborating.

At least 157, mostly unarmed, Palestinians have been killed since the weekly border protests began in March of this year, sparked initially by the relocation of the United State's embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Demonstrations have been further fuelled by heightened economic tensions under the Israeli-Egyptian blockade imposed after Hamas took control of Gaza in 2007.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since 2008, but recent exchanges of fire have increased fears of another conflict.

The group vowed revenge after Israeli air and artillery strikes killed a number of its members. Israel said the strikes were revenge for the death of a soldier who was shot by a Palestinian gunman.

In response, the Hamas military wing warned that "the enemy shall pay a high price in blood for the crime which it commits daily against the rights of our people and our fighters".

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