The Israeli military continued its violent repression of Palestinian protesters on Monday when soldiers once again gunned down unarmed demonstrators whom it claimed were trying to penetrate the border fence separating Israel from the Gaza Strip.
According to Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore, Israeli soldiers said they were "provoked into violence" when small groups of Palestinians began throwing stones at IDF soldiers from the other side of the border fence. The soldiers responded by gunning down demonstrators; by the time the demonstrations had quieted down, at least 28 Palestinians had been killed, and another 600 had been wounded, according to the Hamas-controlled Health Ministry.
Hamas-controlled Health Ministry reports 25 killed during #Gaza protests
The Wall Street Journal reported that a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old had been counted among the dead.
At least 10,000 Palestinians had gathered early Monday local time along more than 10 locations along the border fence, which is one of several closed borders that has effectively cut off Gaza from the rest of the world (though Hamas has been known to dig tunnels to help people move in and out of the territory), Il Sole 24 Ore reported.
The international community has widely condemned President Trump's decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem (though, as Trump has correctly pointed out, every US president since at least Bill Clinton had promised to move the embassy). The UK reiterated Monday that it doesn't intend to move its embassy, adding that it doesn't agree with President Trump's decision.
Since late March, Hamas has been organizing protests along the border fence as part of six weeks of protests meant to demand the long-sought "right of return" for Palestinians who were forced off their land by Jewish settlers during the genesis of the Israeli state.
The IDF has blamed Hamas, which controls Gaza's government - of instigating the "March of Return" protests with the intention of ultimately breaching the border fence, something that the army says would threaten Israeli towns near the border.
On Sunday, Israel dropped leaflets throughout Gaza warning Palestinians to stay away from the border fence. They also accused Hamas of "stealing your money and using it to dig tunnels at your expense."
This is what is written on the leaflets pic.twitter.com/s88z1P83QM
Ruptly is broadcasting a live feed from the Gaza side of the border, where demonstrators could still be seen milling about amid clouds of smoke - though the protest had largely subsided.
On Monday, Israel is celebrating its 70th Independence Day. However, among Palestinians - many of whom are descendants of...