Six Palestinians martyred in border protests: Gaza health officials
JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israeli forces martyred six Palestinians on Friday in protests along Gaza’s border, Gaza health officials said.
The Palestinian deaths bring to around 200 the number of Gazans martyred since the border protests began on March 30, according to Palestinian Health Ministry figures.
Gaza medics said that, in addition to the six martyred, around 140 others were wounded.
The Palestinian protesters are demanding an end to an Israeli and Egyptian blockade on the narrow coastal strip, which is home to around 2 million Gazans. They also seek the right to return to lands that Palestinians fled or were driven from upon Israel’s founding in 1948.
Hamas seized control of Gaza from Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in 2007 and has since fought three wars with Israel, most recently in 2014.
Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh said on a visit to Istanbul on Friday that his group was talking to several parties, including Qatar, Egypt and the United Nations, and he hoped that the talks “could lead to calm in return for breaking the siege”.