Great March of Return: Updates of Israeli-Palestinian clashes



Sun, 08 Apr 2018 - 09:15 GMT


Sun, 08 Apr 2018 - 09:15 GMT

Palastinain people organizes a march on Friday, a week after the Great March of Return, April 6, 2018 – Egypt Today

Palastinain people organizes a march on Friday, a week after the Great March of Return, April 6, 2018 – Egypt Today

CAIRO – 8 April 2018: The “Great March of Return” in Gaza strip revived the Israeli–Palestinian conflict as tens of Palestinian youth were killed and thousands were injured by the Israeli occupation forces that used various types of gases and bullets to disperse them. Egypt Today presents a review of the latest updates of the seven day clashes.

First day of “Great March of Return”

The Palestinians staged a protest on March 30 which comes on the occasion of the Land Day (an annual day of commemoration for Palestinians of the 1976 events) to demand the activation of the "right of return" to Palestinian refugees who left their homes in 1948 and lift the siege the Israeli occupation has placed on of the Gaza Strip.

Around 16 Palestinians were killed and hundred others injured during the clashes with Israeli occupation forces near the eastern borders between the Gaza Strip and Israel. It marks the conflict's most violent day since the 2014 Gaza war.

Palestinian medics stated that one of the dead people was aged 16 and that most of the casualties were struck by gunfire.

Various types of gases and bullets were used by Israeli occupation forces to disperse the Palestinian protests, according to the official Voice of Palestine Radio.

Second day of “Great March of Return”

The Palestinians resumed protesting for the second day on Friday April 6. The Palestinians used burning tires through their protest while the Israeli occupation forces used water to extinguish the burning tires but to no avail.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health in the Gaza Strip announced that the number of martyrs reached eight on the second Friday, while 1,000 Palestinians were injured.

Egypt’s stance on violence against Palestinians

Egypt's permanent representative at the Arab League, Yasser el-Atawi, confirmed that Egypt strongly emphasizes the legitimacy of the Palestinian demands for the refugees' right of return to the Palestinian lands.

Given the bloody events of the Land Day protests, an Arab League Emergency session was held on Tuesday, at the request of Palestine. Atawi warned against the continuation of the status quo without a resumption of the peace process for reaching a just and comprehensive solution to the Palestinian cause, “which is an intrinsic and pivotal issue to the countries of the Arab World.”

During his speech, Atawi also called on the international community to take full responsibility for the Palestinian cause, and to put an end to all crimes committed by the Israeli forces against the Palestinian people through investigating the Land Day events. He urged all relevant parties to exercise restraint in doing so, so as not to endanger the lives of the civilians.

Egypt wholeheartedly stands behind the Palestinian people in their legitimate struggle for their right to self-determination. Egypt’s delegate to the Arab League added that this includes support for an independent and sovereign state with Al-Quds as its capital based on the 1967 borders and relevant UN resolutions.

Hamas Chief, Ismail Haniyeh, called on the Arab League to take Israel to the International Criminal Court for its “crimes” against the peaceful demonstrations of the Land Day that were launched on Friday.

In a statement released by the Foreign Ministry, in the wake of the violence against the Land Day Protests, Egypt condemned the use of violence by Israeli security forces against unarmed Palestinian civilians during this peaceful march to celebrate the anniversary of Land Day.

According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, more than 52 Palestinians were killed by the Israeli forces during the Land Day protests and over 1,000 others injured.

Thousands of Palestinians launched demonstrations, titled the “Great March of Return” in the besieged Gaza Strip to protest against Israel’s refusal to enable refugees to exercise the right of return to their pre-1948 lands.

Many Palestinians were displaced during 1948 and ended up fleeing to Gaza. Displaced Palestinians and their descendants, living in the Gaza Strip, are recognized as refugees by the United Nations.

International condemnation on killing Palestinian civilians

The Security Council condemned in an emergency meeting the killing of civilians in Gaza during ‘a peaceful protest’.

Tayé-Brook Zerihoun, United Nations assistant secretary-general for political affairs, briefed the council on the situation; he said “what had begun early in the day as a demonstration had devolved into violence at several locations across Gaza, resulting in more than 15 deaths and 1,000 injuries of civilians, with some reportedly coming from live ammunition that had been used by the Israeli security forces,”according to Middle East News Agency.

France also called Israel last Sunday to show restraint following its military response to Palestinian protests on the Gaza-Israel border.

"France reminds the Israeli authorities of their duty to protect civilians and urges them to show the greatest restraint," a Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said in a statement according to Reuters.

Moreover, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders stated that he doesn't believe the official response from Israeli authorities.



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