Two of the dead were teenagers. In all, more than 60 people suffered from gunshot wounds.
Thousands of people attended the funeral of seven Palestinians killed by Israeli soldiers during protests. Among the dead near the fence along the perimeter of Gaza and Israel were two boys aged 11 and 14 years. The Human Rights Group in Gaza says that the 11-year-old was killed by Israeli fire during protests. The UN’s chief humanitarian representative in the region, Jamie McGoldrick, said he was “deeply saddened” by the loss of life and added that the parties must ensure that children are not subjected to violence or the risk of violence.
A representative of the Israeli army said that about 20,000 protesters gathered in several places along the border, people were throwing grenades and explosive devices. Troops “reacted by means of dispersal of disorders and acted in accordance with standard operational procedures,” it was informed. In response, Israeli aircraft also struck at two positions of Hamas in the territory of Gaza.
Since March 30, the Palestinians have been protesting weekly against what they call the “Great March of Return”, demanding that the Arabs who fled or were expelled during the creation of Israel in 1948 were allowed to return to their homes. The demonstrators also focused on the devastating ten-year Israeli-Egyptian blockade that has existed since the capture of Gaza by Hamas fighters. Over the past two weeks, Friday’s rallies, led by Hamas, have become more massive, and have also begun at night. As the protesters say, it helps to save lives, because people can move under the cover of darkness. In all, more than 150 people have died since the beginning of the protests.