Israeli forces kill Palestinian man during Gaza protests -medics

Palestinian protesters burn tires during a demonstration on the beach near the maritime border with Israel, in Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza Strip, on October 29, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 29 October 2018

Israeli forces kill Palestinian man during Gaza protests -medics

  • A Palestinian was killed by Israeli fire in fresh clashes on the Gaza border
  • Some 3,000 Palestinian were gathered along the coast and border fence in northern Gaza

GAZA: Israeli forces shot dead a Palestinian man and wounded 25 including two medics on Monday during Palestinian protests along the Gaza Strip’s beachfront border with Israel, the Gaza Health Ministry said.
Witnesses said dozens of protesters in the northern Gaza Strip burned tires and threw stones at Israeli soldiers stationed behind Israel’s frontier fence and that troops fired live bullets and tear gas.
Mohammed abu Abada, 27, was shot in the chest in protests along the border near Beit Lahia in northern Gaza, a health ministry spokesman told AFP.
The Israeli military, estimating the crowd at around 3,000 people, said explosive devices were also thrown at troops deployed on the Israeli side of the fence along the beach.
The soldiers, a military spokesman said, responded with “riot dispersal means and live fire.”
Gaza medics have tallied 217 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces during almost seven months of protests that have included brief breaches of the border fence and the launching of incendiary balloons that have torched fields in southern Israel.
On Sunday, three Palestinian boys were killed in an Israeli air strike at the Gaza frontier, medics said. Israel said it targeted Palestinians trying to blow up part of the fence.
Some of the protesters on Monday held photos of the three youngsters. The Health Ministry said two were aged 13 and one was a 14-year-old.
Hundreds of Palestinians earlier on Monday laid to rest the three boys, with their families insisting they had no militant ties as mourners called on Gaza’s groups to retaliate.
Aisha Abu Daher said her 14-year-old son Abdel-Hamid had “nothing to do with resistance,” referring to the militant factions. Abdel-Hamid and his friends drank tea in the afternoon and rode a donkey cart, a daily habit, and did not come home, she said.
Palestinians say they are protesting against Israel’s blockade of the territory and in support of a right for Palestinian refugees to return to land lost during Israel’s founding in 1948.
One Israeli soldier has been killed by a sniper during the more than seven months of protests.
Israel says its lethal response to the protests is necessary to prevent armed infiltration from Gaza, which is run by Hamas. Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since 2007.
Violence along the border has occasionally escalated into Palestinian rocket attacks and Israeli air strikes, with Egypt and the United Nations repeatedly mediating cease-fires.
Two million Palestinians live in tiny Gaza, most of them stateless descendants of people who fled or were driven from homes in Israel 70 years ago.
The enclave is in a state of economic collapse, the World Bank says, citing the restrictions on Palestinian movement and the import of goods that Israel and Egypt have enforced along the Gaza border.
The two countries have said those measures stem from security concerns.

UK’s Hunt lands in Iran to discuss nuclear deal, bilateral issues

Updated 5 min 1 sec ago

UK’s Hunt lands in Iran to discuss nuclear deal, bilateral issues

  • Iran said its still hopeful that Europe can salvage the nuclear deal, which the US withdrew from in May
  • Other signatories of the deal, including France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China, have been searching for ways to save deal

DUBAI/LONDON: British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt arrived in Tehran on Monday for the first time since taking office to hold talks with Iranian authorities on issues including the future of the 2015 nuclear deal, Iranian media reported.

In May, US President Donald Trump abandoned the deal, negotiated with five other world powers during Democratic President Barack Obama’s administration. The United States also restored sanctions targeting Iran’s oil, banking and transportation sectors earlier this month.

“He will meet (Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad) Zarif today and the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani,” state TV reported.

Shamkhani is an ally of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the last say on all state matters, including nuclear issues.

Hunt’s office said in a statement that, during his meeting with Zarif, he would stress that the UK is committed to the nuclear deal as long as Iran sticks to its terms. He will also discuss European efforts to maintain nuclear-related sanctions relief.

Other signatories of the deal, the European Union, France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China, have been searching for ways to salvage the pact.

“The Iran nuclear deal remains a vital component of stability in the Middle East by eliminating the threat of a nuclearized Iran. It needs 100 percent compliance though to survive,” Hunt said in a statement ahead of the visit.

“We will stick to our side of the bargain as long as Iran does. But we also need to see an end to destabilizing activity by Iran in the rest of the region if we are going to tackle the root causes of the challenges the region faces,” Hunt added.

Under the deal, Iran restricted its disputed nuclear program, widely seen in the West as a disguised effort to develop the means to make atomic bombs, in exchange for an end to international sanctions.

Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said Iran is still hopeful that Europe can save the nuclear deal, which it previously warned of scrapping if the EU fails to preserve its economic benefits against US pressure.

“There are some ambiguities on implementation of EU’s mechanism to protect trade with Iran from America’s sanctions ... But we remain hopeful that the Europeans can save the deal,” Qasemi said at a news conference on the day of Hunt’s arrival in Iran.

The European Union has been trying to establish a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) for non-dollar trade with Iran to save the deal.

The SPV was conceived as a clearing house that could be used to help match Iranian oil and gas exports against purchases of EU goods, circumventing US sanctions based on the global use of the dollar for oil sales.

The EU has tried to have the SPV set up by this month, but no country has offered to host it, six diplomats told Reuters last week.

“We expect EU to implement the SPV as soon as possible,” Qasemi said. “Iran adheres to its commitments as long as other signatories honor theirs.”

Hunt will also discuss Iran’s role in the conflicts in Syria and Yemen, his office said, and press Iran on its human rights record, calling for the immediate release of detained British-Iranian dual nationals where there are humanitarian grounds to do so.

“I arrive in Iran with a clear message for the country’s leaders: putting innocent people in prison cannot and must not be used as a tool of diplomatic leverage,” he said.