Palestinians injured by Israeli army fire in Gaza

Israeli Troops Wound 13 On Gaza Border, Day After Deadly Protest

The United States on Saturday blocked a draft UN Security Council statement urging restraint and calling for an investigation of clashes on the Gaza-Israel border, diplomats said.

Fifteen Palestinians were killed and more than 700 wounded inFriday's violence near the Israeli border, according to Palestinian health officials.

In one video, a man later identified as Ibrahim Abu Shanab is seen kneeling on the ground in the first of two rows of worshippers Friday, facing the border fence at a distance of 150 to 200 metres (yards). Suddenly, he stands up, limps a few meters, collapses and is carried away by young men who shout "Allahu Akbar", or "God is Great".

The Israeli military produced a video showing what it said was one of the Hamas fighters and an accomplice shooting at Israeli forces across the fence in northern Gaza before being killed by Israeli tank and gunfire.

The military said troops followed strict rules of engagement, and that protesters were putting themselves in "harm's way" by operating in a unsafe area.

"From what my understanding is, you have tens and tens of thousands of people who are engaged in a nonviolent protest".

The officials did not say how troops would respond if "red lines" were crossed.

Lieberman's comments raised the possibility of more bloodshed this Friday, when another mass protest is expected.

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Around 30,000 Palestinians participated in last Friday's protest march near the border, which saw a number of protesters throw stones and firebombs in the direction of Israeli soldiers.

Israel's defense minister had previously rejected global calls for an independent investigation. "This was an incident where soldiers were firing from behind the fence, separated by buffer zones and other objects, firing on individuals well behind the fence, in some cases retreating, not moving forward, or advancing without posing imminent threat". Around 70 white tents lined on the open field in eastern Gaza Strip near the Israeli border, turning the area, the scene of recent bloody Israeli-Palestinian clashes, into a big picnic-like party in Spring.

On Monday, a seventeenth Arab rioter who was shot on Friday died, and Islamic Jihad said that the terrorist was a member of the group. In addition, the Israeli military clarified that at least 11 of the Palestinians who were killed were known terrorists.

Manelis alleged Monday that Hamas staged the mass march as a cover for attacks.

"The big achievement of last Friday is that they (marchers) didn't cross the border", he told Israel's Channel 10.

Ahmed Abu Artema, a Gazan social-media activist who initiated the protest, said by telephone on Sunday that the idea of returning to the lands lost in 1948 was a "strategic goal" that would "not necessarily be achieved within a month or a year", but that the protesters along the borders would determine the timing. In response to Hamas rule, Israel and Egypt enforced a crippling blockade of Gaza's borders.

Hamas has been further weakened by global isolation and financial pressure by the internationally recognized Palestinian Authority, along with three wars against Israel.

Friday's rallies were the start of a six-week protest that culminates on May 15, the day the Palestinians call as "Nakba", or "Catastrophe" when Israel was created. Life in Gaza has become increasingly harsh after more than a decade of closures, with residents enduring daily power outages lasting hours.

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