By Palestine Chronicle Staff
While thousands of Palestinians gather at the Gaza border to launch the peaceful ‘Great March of Return’, Israel forces responded violently, resulting in five deaths and many injuries.
The peaceful protests began earlier today, March 30, marking the day Israeli forces killed six Palestinians during protests against land confiscation in 1976.
The Great March of Return is a popular, peaceful and non-violent march by millions of Palestinian refugees going back to the lands from which they were displaced during the 1948 War. It calls for implementation of UN Resulotion 194#مسيرة_العودة_الكبرى#the_great_march_of_return pic.twitter.com/kkSHCENe3K
— Asmaa..~ 👑 (@namezZz96) March 30, 2018
Organized by a large network of Palestinian activists, the protests are expected to continue until May 15, which marks the 70th anniversary of the Nakba – or the ethnic cleansing of Palestine of its native inhabitants in 1947-48.
WATCH: Palestinians traditionally dance dabke while gearing up for the “Great Return March”, starting tomorrow on the border of the besieged Gaza Strip and Israel. Israeli forces have threatened the Palestinians participating with live fire.
— The IMEU (@theIMEU) March 29, 2018
Although Palestinian movements, including Hamas had declared the peaceful intention or the protests, the Israeli military quickly built up a large force at the Gaza border.
“The troops have been given clear orders on opening fire,” Brigadier General Ronen Manelis, the Israel Defense Forces spokesperson, said Thursday during an interview aired on Israeli television station. “Whoever tries to interfere with the security infrastructure or compromise the fence for a mass crossing into Israel – we will prevent this action,” he added.
Following the establishment of Israel, Prime Minister David Ben Gurion ordered the army to shoot and kill any Palestinian who dared cross the new borders to return to their land. 70 years later, the IDF is implementing the exact same policy at the Gaza’s ‘Great Return March.’ pic.twitter.com/uiusasTWXD
— Edo Konrad (@edokonrad) March 30, 2018
This morning, one of the protesters, Mohammed Najjar, 25, was shot dead near Jabaliya.
A Gaza farmer, Omar Samour, 27, was also killed by an Israeli tank shell near Khan Younis.
According to local residents, he was gathering crops from his field to sell later in a local market.
The other victims of Israeli violence are Amin Mahmoud Mu’ammar, 38, from Rafah in the southern Gaza, Muhammad Abu Omar, 19, and Ahmad Ibrahim Odeh, 16, from the northern Gaza Strip.
(PC, Social Media)