Sunday, May 15, 2011

At least one Israeli dies in shooting of Palestinian refugees

A Palestinian was killed and another 67 were wounded today by Israeli army gunfire in northern Gaza when thousands were demonstrating to commemorate the Nakba (Catastrophe) in the Palestinians remember the exile and dispossession of his people with the creation of Israel in 1948. Fifteen of the victims, mostly children, were wounded by shrapnel from missiles fired by Israeli tanks near the Palestinian town of Beit Lahia, told reporters Selmeya Abu Adham, a spokesman for the emergency services in Gaza.

The rest, including the deceased, were wounded by gunshots, he added. Thousands of people marched this morning in the northern territory to the border with Israel, witnesses told Efe, adding that Israeli tanks stationed in the area fired at least four rockets into the area where the demonstration took place.

An Israeli Army spokesman confirmed to Efe that "is taking place a massive rally in northern Gaza" but said could not confirm if the forces opened fire on the population. At a rally held in Gaza capital attended by ten thousand people, the Hamas leader, Ismail Haniyeh, said the Palestinians have the right to resist Israeli occupation and to recover property lost in 1948, according to Israeli news service "Ynet" .

This is the first year since 2007 that the Palestinian factions together in the Gaza Strip to organize joint events to commemorate the Nakba, which was made possible following the signing of Palestinian reconciliation earlier this month in the Cairo. The Islamist movement Hamas, in coordination with the nationalist Fatah, has organized two major events with support from other factions.

The first was held in the north of the strip, while the other was in the southern town of Rafah on the Egyptian border.

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