Monday, 22 October, 2018

Using slingshots, Palestinian protestors shoot down Israeli drone

Palestinian employees queue outside a cash machine outside the Bank of Palestine as they wait to withdraw their salaries in Gaza City 431 Palestinians hurt after Israeli troops fire shots and tear gas
| 06 May, 2018, 00:17

Earlier, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights urged Israel to refrain from using excessive force against Palestinians.

Palestinians sent several stunt kites with incendiary bombs over the border towards Israel on Friday.

The protest campaign is scheduled to run until May 15, when organizers expect a million people to turn out to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of Israel, which Palestinians call the "nakba" or "catastrophe".

The Israeli army fears a mass push of thousands of protesters to break through the Gaza border fence and cross into Israel.

Protestors in the "Great Return March" used slingshots to shoot down the drone as Israeli soldiers responded with bullets and volleys of tear gas.

"The Israel Defence Force (IDF) is not involved in this incident in any way", a spokesperson for the IDF said.

At least 431 Palestinians were injured Friday, Palestinian officials said, as some 7,000 took part in the demonstrations, flew dozens of kites with petrol bombs into Israel, hurled stones at soldiers, and tried to breach the border fence.


"In the beginning we protested peacefully", said a kite maker who identified himself only by his nickname, Abu Ayed, fearing Israeli retribution.

Israel's Knesset on Monday passed a controversial law that allows the prime minister to bypass parliament and declare war or order a major operation on his own after only consulting his minister for military affairs. Israel's government celebrated the U.S. decision, saying it recognized the "reality" that Jerusalem was the historic capital of the Jewish people.

"This is a cynical act that harms the welfare of Gaza residents and the humanitarian efforts carried out by Israel and many other countries", the army said.

Rights groups said open-fire regulations are unlawful because they permit troops to use potentially lethal force against unarmed protesters.

Israel says the protests have been organised by Hamas - an Islamist group that controls Gaza and is sworn to Israel's destruction - to provide cover for attacks, and that most of the dead were militants.

Trump's moves angered Palestinian leaders, who have refused to talk to his administration, accusing it of pro-Israel bias.

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