GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip: Thousands of Palestinians have attended the burials of four people killed by Israeli fire during protests along the Gaza-Israel frontier.
Funerals were held across the Gaza Strip on Saturday, a day after the four were shot, including 16-year-old Mohammed Jahjouh.
An 18-year-old Palestinian shot by Israeli forces died of his wounds on Saturday, the fourth fatality in clashes along the Gaza border a day earlier, health officials in the Hamas-run enclave said.
Ayman Shehr was shot in the stomach in Deir Al-Balah in central Gaza, Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf Al-Qudra told AFP.
Three other Palestinians, including a 16-year-old, were killed on Friday by Israeli fire during protests and clashes along the Gaza border, according to the ministry. Israel’s military said it had opened fire “according to operational procedures” in place.
More than 40 Palestinians — including two journalists and four first aid responders — were wounded, Qudra said.
At least 239 Palestinians have been killed since the protests by Palestinians in the Gaza Strip began on March 30, mostly by Israeli fire during border clashes but also by air and tank strikes.
Two Israeli soldiers have been killed over the same period, one by a Palestinian sniper and another during an aborted special forces operation inside Gaza.
Protesters are calling for Palestinian refugees to be allowed to return to their former homes now inside Israel. Friday’s protests were the deadliest in a month and a half of relatively restrained protests that saw one fatality.
Hamas has staged the rallies to pressure Israel and Egypt into easing the blockade they imposed when the militant group seized Gaza in 2007.
Top Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh told mourners that his movement complained to mediators over deaths and vowed to keep up the protests.