Eight Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces and dozens more injured since early 30 Mart morning, as thousands of Gazans took to the borders with Israel as part of “The Great March of Return” taking place across the besieged coastal enclave to mark the 42nd Land Day.
In 1976,Israeli police shot and killed six Palestinian citizens of Israel as they were protesting the Israeli government's expropriation of thousands of dunums of Palestinian land. Since then, Palestinians have commemorated March 30 as Land Day with mass protests across the ocupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, Gaza, and inside Israel.
A Palestinian farmer was killed around dawn and another was injured as Israeli forces targeted the southern Gazan district of Khan Younis with mortar shells.
Spokesperson of the Gaza Ministry of Health, Ashraf al-Qidra, identified the slain farmer as Omar Sammour, 31, adding that another Palestinian, whose identity remained unknown, was injured during the shelling.Israeli media reported that Sammour and the other man with him were targeted for approaching the border fence with Israel in a “suspicious manner,” though local sources reported that Sammour was simply gathering crops from his land to sell later in the day.
On Friday afternoon, medical sources confirmed to Ma’an that two more Palestinians were killed during the protest along the border.
One of the slain Palestinians was identified as Amin Mahmoud Muhammar from Rafah in southern Gaza. His age remained unknown.
The other slain Palestinian was identified as Muhammad Kamal al-Najjar, 25, from eastern Jabaliya in northern Gaza.Around 2:20 p.m. medical sources told Ma’an that a fourth Palestinian had been killed. He was identified as Muhammad Abu Omar, 19.
Fifteen minutes later, the Gaza Ministry of Health confirmed that a fifth Palestinian had been killed. He was identified as 16-year-old Ahmad Ibrahim Odeh from the northern Gaza Strip.
Around 3:15p.m. the ministry reported that Jihad Freineh, 33, from Gaza City was killed.
Minutes later, the ministry reported that the seventh Palestinian had been killed by Israeli forces.
He was identified as Mahmoud Saadi Rahmi, from Gaza City.
Leading up to the march, the Israeli army released a statement saying it had declared the border area along Gaza a “closed military zone,” meaning that any Palestinian who got close to the border fence could risk getting shot.