15-Year-old Palestinian Boy Fatally Shot In Chest By Israeli Forces

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15-year-old Othman Helles ws shot fatally shot in the chest while at least 70 other #Palestinians were wounded.

Gaza border

Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian teenager during protests along the Gaza border on Friday, Gaza medical officials said, and an Israeli soldier was wounded during the demonstrations that had turned violent, the military said.

More than 130 Palestinians have been killed during the Israel-Gaza frontier protests which have entered their fourth month and have drawn a lethal Israeli army response.

Thousands took part in Friday’s protests, which marked 100 days since their launch, with some venturing close to the border fence, burning tires and throwing stones.

Israel’s military said Palestinian protesters hurled grenades, explosive devices and fire-bombs toward the Israeli troops across the border fence. One soldier was moderately wounded by a grenade, the army said in a statement.

“Troops responded by firing towards the terrorists,” the military said.

It said it fired toward a Palestinian who was attempting to infiltrate Israeli territory, but the incident appeared to be unrelated to the death of the teenager.

Gaza border

The Gaza Health Ministry said the 15-year-old boy killed was shot in the chest. It said 70 others were wounded, at least 20 by live fire, and others by tear gas.

There have been no Israeli fatalities during the “Great March of Return” demonstrations.

Protest organizers say the demonstrations aim to press demands such as for a right to lands lost to Israel in the 1948 war of its foundation and for an Israeli-Egyptian blockade to ease.

Israel says Hamas, the Islamist group that rules Gaza, has been orchestrating the protests to distract from their governance problems and provide cover for militants’ cross-border attacks. Hamas, which Israel and the United States designate as a terrorist organization, denies this.

Home to 2 million Palestinians, more than half of them war refugees and their descendants, Gaza has suffered deep poverty with vital infrastructure collapsing under a 12-year blockade by Israel, which says its aim is to curb security threats by Hamas.

Egypt keeps tight restrictions on its border crossing with Gaza.

Banner / Thumbnail : Reuters

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