Israeli Military Kills 15 Palestinians in Confrontations on Gaza Border


Before the larger clashes broke out, the Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza reported that a Palestinian man, a farmer, was killed near the border zone early Friday by Israeli artillery fire — one of the 15 it reported dead later in the day. T he Israeli military’s account said one of its tanks had fired on two Palestinians who approached the border and were “acting suspiciously.”

“We are raising the flags of peace and have nothing to harm the enemy,” said Hamed Jundiya, 63, an educational supervisor who erected his tent a few hundred yards from the border fence. Gazans are desperate, he said, “living without work, electricity and open borders.”

Another protester, Mohammad Obaid, 18, took a more militant stand, saying that holding a Palestinian flag in one hand and a rock in the other would be enough to get him killed by an Israeli soldier. “We can bring back our lands with the power of guns and weapons, not with a march, a stone or a knife,” he said.

Even before the protests started, Israel had begun a campaign to hold Hamas responsible for any violence. Israel’s hard-line defense minister, Avigdor Lieberman, warned Gazans to keep away from the border in a post on Twitter written in Arabic.

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