You are here

Palestine to ask UN for protection from occupation

Palestinian death toll rises to 38; no Israeli casualties reported

By Agencies - Apr 21,2018 - Last updated at Apr 21,2018

A girl cries during funeral of 29-year-old Saad Abdul Majid Abdul Aal Abu Taha who was shot dead by Israeli forces during border rallies in Khan Younis, Gaza, on Saturday (Anadolu Agency photo)

GAZA CITY/OCCUPIED JERUSALEM — Palestine will approach the UN Security Council to demand international protection for Palestinians under Israeli occupation, a spokesman for President Mahmoud Abbas said on Friday, the Anadolu Agency reported. 

In a press statement, Nabil Abu Rudeinah called on the international community "to have a say to put an end to the Israeli aggression on the Palestinian people”, Palestine’s official WAFA news agency reported.

He said that Israeli actions pose a threat not only to the Palestinian people, but also to international law, which Israel “violates every day”.

Agence France-Presse reported on Friday that four Palestinians were shot dead by Israeli occupation forces as thousands protested along the Gaza Strip's border with Israel in a fourth straight Friday of demonstrations.

Israeli occupation forces’ gunfire killed a 15-year-old boy and two young men, aged 24 and 25, in northern Gaza, rescue workers said, and a 29-year-old Palestinian was shot dead in the south of the coastal enclave.

UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process Nikolay Mladenov took to Twitter to air his feelings on Friday night and called for an inquiry into the killings.

"It is Outrageous to shoot at children!" he wrote.

"How does the killing of a child in #Gaza today help #peace? It doesn't! It fuels anger and breeds more killing.

"#Children must be protected from #violence, not exposed to it, not killed! This tragic incident must be investigated."

The Palestinian ambassador at the United Nations Riyad Mansour renewed his call for a "transparent and independent investigation".

The latest deaths brought the toll of those killed by Israeli occupation forces to 38 since March 30, with hundreds of others also wounded by gunfire, according to Gaza’s health ministry.

On Friday alone, 440 protesters were wounded by gunfire or needed treatment for tear gas inhalation, the ministry said.

Israel says it has only opened fire when necessary to guard its border and prevent violence, but its open-fire rules have come under scrutiny.

No Israelis have been wounded during the demonstrations.

Israeli occupation force aircraft dropped leaflets in the border area early Friday warning against approaching the fence.

Referring to the Islamist movement that runs the Gaza Strip, the leaflet said: “You are participating in violent riots. The Hamas terror organisation is taking advantage of you in order to carry out terror attacks.”

It added: “Stay away from the fence and do not attempt to harm it; avoid using weapons and committing violent acts against Israeli security forces and Israeli citizens.”

The number of protesters on Friday was lower than the previous three weeks, but still in the thousands.

Both Palestinians killed were shot east of Jabaliya in the north of the Gaza Strip, the health ministry said.

Among the thousands gathered to protest, at least hundreds were approaching the fence and throwing stones and burning tyres, an AFP correspondent said.

Israeli occupation forces responded by using tear gas in addition to live fire.

Israel claimed  that some 3,000 Palestinians were involved in “riots, attempting to approach the security infrastructures, burning tyres adjacent to it and attempting to fly kites with burning items attached”.

It said in the statement that “troops are responding with riot dispersal means and are firing in accordance with the rules of engagement”. 


‘No place for you’ 


Tens of thousands have gathered on previous Fridays as part of the protests near the border. The protests are meant to last six weeks, but peak on Fridays.

A smaller number have approached the fence and thrown stones or rolled burning tyres towards Israeli occupation forces.

Israel has pledged to stop “damage to the fence, infiltrations and attacks”, and alleges there have been attempts at all three.

It accuses Hamas, with whom it has fought three wars since 2008, of using the protests as “cover to carry out violence”.

Palestinians say protesters are being shot while posing no threat to heavily armed occupation forces.

The European Union and UN chief Antonio Guterres have called for an independent investigation into the Palestinian deaths, but Israel has rejected it.

The protests are calling for Palestinian refugees to be allowed to return to their former lands, from which they were expelled or forced to flee amid violence surrounding the creation of Israel. 

More than 700,000 Palestinians were expelled or fled during the 1948 war. 

Protest organisers officially labelled the latest event in support of “martyrs and prisoners”, but on social media some Palestinians dubbed it the “Friday of Kites”.

Gazans pinned notes to some of the kites telling Israeli occupation forces that “there is no place for you in Palestine”.

95 users have voted.

Add new comment

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
15 + 3 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.


Get top stories and blog posts emailed to you each day.