(JTA) — Israeli troops killed five Palestinians who approached the border between Israel and Gaza, Palestinian sources said.
In addition to the fatalities, 35 people were injured on Friday afternoon when Israeli soldiers opened fire on individuals who came near the fence in two different areas of the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian Maan news agency reported.
According to the report, which was based on accounts by medics who treated the wounded, two Palestinians were killed after being shot by Israeli forces near Khan Younis. One of the fatalities, Muhammad al-Raqeb, was 15. Adnan Moussa Abu Elayyan, 22, was shot in the head and killed in the same area.
The two Palestinians were there with a dozen other Gazans to protest against Israel, according to Maan. Ynet reported that they were shot at after they approached the fence to hurl stones and firebombs on soldiers guarding the area.
At a different protest that turned violent north of Khan Younis, three Palestinians, all aged 20, were killed during riots that developed during a demonstration east of Gaza City. The demonstrators came there to express their solidarity with Palestinians in the West Bank, where attacks on Israelis have multiplied in recent days. Attacks – mostly stabbings – by Palestinians against Israelis have also increased in volume within Israel’s 1967 borders.
An Israeli army spokeswoman told Maan that 200 Palestinians approached the security fence and hurled rocks and rolled burning tires at Israeli forces. Israeli forces responded with live fire towards the “main instigators,” she said, confirming five direct hits.
On Friday, a Palestinian man was killed by an Israeli police officer near Hebron after the assailant tried to stab another officer, according to Army Radio. And in Afula, a Palestinian woman was shot by a uniformed Israeli whom she reportedly intended to stab.