Gaza protests – as it happened: Two Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in second day of deadly violence

World

Israel has faced widespread international condemnation after 58 people including a baby were killed in protests in Gaza, where Israeli soldiers met rocks thrown by Palestinians with live ammunition. 

A 51-year-old man was also killed in Tuesday’s more muted demonstrations, along with another protester, bringing the total number of dead to 60. 

The US joined Israel in blaming Hamas for the deaths, with the Israeli military suggesting the terrorist group attempted armed violence under cover of the demonstrations against Donald Trump’s move of the US embassy to Jerusalem.

Turkey and South Africa, staunchly aligned with the Palestinians, recalled their ambassadors to Israel while Boris Johnson said: “We understand that some have been provoking that violence but on the other hand there has got to be restraint in the use of live rounds.”

Khaled Batch, the head of the organising committee of protests, said Tuesday would be a day for funerals. It is also what Palestinians call the “Nakba” day, the anniversary of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians’ displacement following Israel’s founding.

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Live Updates

17 hours ago

Welcome to our live coverage of events in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories as fallout from the relocation of the US embassy to Jerusalem continues.

17 hours ago

Here is our special dispatch from Gaza taking in the events of yesterday:

16 hours ago

Israel’s ambassador to the UK, Mark Regev, has said the country “did everything we could to avoid” yesterday’s killings.
“We dropped leaflets urging people not to attack the border, we used social media, we used radio and television broadcasts,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today ​programme.
“We didn’t want to see this violence.”

16 hours ago

Challenged on the Israeli Defence Force’s use of live ammunition, Mr Regev said protester were armed with “far more than the odd rock”.
“You’ve got people charging the border fence with wire cutters, with explosives, with Molotov cocktails, with other weapons.
“Their goal is clear and Hamas has articulated the goal … ‘to breach the border, to get inside Israel and to kill Israeli citizens’.”

16 hours ago

Mr Regev said he “rejects” the suggestion the IDF engaged in the indiscriminate use of lethal force, as charged by Today.
The protests were not “spontaneous”, he said.
He added: “If they were protesting inside Gaza no one would interfere.”

16 hours ago

Mr Regev insisted that “we only use live fire in a very measured way, a very surgical way, and only when there is no alternative”.
Pressed on how so many could have died if this was the case, he said there were “40,000 people involved in violent riots on our border”, with “continuous attempts” to breach the frontier.
“We have to protect our people,” he added.

16 hours ago

  

This was the White House’s reaction to yesterday’s killings, in which a spokesman declined to call on Israel to show restraint.

16 hours ago

Rocket warning sirens sounded in southern Israel near the Gaza border on Tuesday, the Israeli military said, but it was not immediately clear whether any missiles had been fired from the Palestinian enclave.
The sirens went off on the day Palestinians mark the “Nakba”, or “Catastrophe” of their dispossession when Israel was founded 70 years ago, and the day after Israeli forces killed 58 Palestinians during protests at the border.
​Reuters

16 hours ago

The UN Security Council was due to meet on Tuesday to discuss yesterday’s violence on the Gaza border.
Kuwait had called for the session to be held but it was unclear what might come from it.
Diplomats said countries were unable to reach unanimous agreement yesterday on a proposed joint statement circulated by Kuwait.
The draft statement would have expressed “outrage and sorrow” at the killings, sought an “independent and transparent investigation”, and called on all sides to exercise restraint.
​Additional reporting by AP

15 hours ago

Our story here on the very young victim of yesterday’s killing: ​

15 hours ago

The earlier rocket siren was a false alarm, the Israeli military has said.

15 hours ago

The site of yesterday’s protests is currently calm, according to reports.

 

15 hours ago

Here is our long read on the “Nakba” anniversary and a look back at the last 70 years:

This is why the Nakba still matters to Palestinians 70 years on

During the First Intifada uprising of 1987, the Israeli military carried out what the residents of my refugee camp in Gaza referred to as the “Eid Massacre”.
The killing of four young people in the camp, including my childhood friend Raed Munis, took place on the first day of the Muslim holiday.

15 hours ago

Ireland’s foreign minister, Simon Coveney, summoned the Israeli ambassador to express the country’s concern at the killings in Gaza, according to reports in Irish media.
Mr Coveney’s spokesperson said he was also “very disturbed by the injuries suffered by health workers” attending to injured protesters.
The Gaza Strip’s health service was “overwhelmed” by the number of casualties, the spokesman was quoted by RTE as saying.

14 hours ago

Muslim-majority countries should review their ties with Israel in the wake of yesterday’s killings, Turkish prime minister Binali Yildirim has said.

14 hours ago

John Brennan, the former director of the CIA, has weighed in on yesterday’s violence.

 

14 hours ago
14 hours ago

Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has condemned yesterday’s killings in Gaza as “unacceptable and inhuman”.
The medics group said: “It is unbearable to witness such a massive number of unarmed people being shot in such a short time.

“Our medical teams are working around the clock, as they have done since 1 April, providing surgical and postoperative care to men, women, and children, and they will continue to do so tonight, tomorrow, and as long as they are needed.

“In one of the hospitals where we are working, the chaotic situation is comparable to what we observed after the bombings of the 2014 war, with a colossal influx of injured people in a few hours, completely overwhelming the medical staff.”

Some operation had been performed in hallways due to the numbers involved, MSF said.

14 hours ago

The UN’s human rights office has condemned Monday’s “appalling deadly violence” by Israeli forces in Gaza and said it was concerned about potential for fruther events on Tuesday, while calling for an independent investigation.

The body’s human rights spokesman Rupert Colville said Israel had a right to defend its borders according to international law, but lethal force should only be used a last resort, and was not justified by Palestinians approaching the Gaza fence.

Additional reporting by Reuters

13 hours ago

Boris Johnson has now said he is “extremely saddened” by the deaths of 58 Palestinians in Gaza yesterday.
In a new statement the foreign secretary reiterated his call for restraint in the use of live ammunition.

Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas urged the international community to condemn what he called “massacres” carried out by Israeli troops in Gaza.

Of the 59 Palestinians killed, six were children, Gaza’s health ministry said. Some 1,360 Palestinians were wounded by bullets, including 130 who were in serious or critical condition. 

Egypt, an important ally of Israel, condemned the killings while the UN human rights chief, Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein, decried the “shocking killing of dozens”.

The European Union’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, called on Israel to respect the “principle of proportionality in the use of force” and show restraint, while also urging Hamas to ensure any protests remain peaceful.

Additional reporting by agencies

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