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Palestinian said to die of wounds sustained in Gaza border protest

Palestinian said to die of wounds sustained in Gaza border protest

A Palestinian teenager died Tuesday four days after he was hit by an Israeli tear gas canister during clashes along the Gaza border, the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry said.

Hassan Nofel, 17, was hit in the face with a tear gas canister on Friday during a protest east of Al-Bureij in central Gaza, the ministry said.

The death brings the toll from Friday’s protest to three killed and 17 wounded, the ministry said.

At the time, the Israeli army said some 8,200 “rioters and demonstrators” had gathered along the border to throw stones and a number of explosive devices towards its troops.

The Israeli forces “responded with riot dispersal means and fired according to standard operating procedures,” a spokesman said.

Since last March, the Gaza border has seen large-scale weekly clashes on Fridays, smaller protests along the northern Gaza border on Tuesdays, as well as periodic flareups between the Israeli military and Palestinian terror organizations.

Palestinian demonstrators evacuate a wounded person during a demonstration near the fence along the border with Israel, east of Gaza City, on February 8, 2019. (Photo by MAHMUD HAMS / AFP)

On Friday, some 8,000 Palestinians gathered along the border for the weekly demonstrations and riots, throwing rocks, firebombs and explosives at soldiers, who responded with tear gas and occasional live fire.

For the past several months, Egypt, UN special coordinator to the Middle East peace process Nikolay Mladenov and Qatar have worked to try to restore calm in Gaza and prevent flare-ups between Israel and terror groups in the Strip.

Israel has demanded an end to the violent demonstrations along the border in any ceasefire agreement.

In recent weeks, tensions between Israel and terror groups in Gaza rose after a Palestinian sniper opened fire on a group of Israeli soldiers. The bullet hit the helmet of an officer, lightly injuring him.

Last week, Israel announced that it had begun the final phase of construction of a 20-foot (some 6 meters) high galvanized steel fence that will completely surround the Strip.

The barrier will extend 65 kilometers (40 miles) miles around the enclave and sit atop the subterranean concrete wall that Israel is constructing around Gaza to block terrorist groups’ attack tunnels.

 

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