In what has become a weekly occurrence, violent Palestinian protests were reported along the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip on Friday afternoon, following the end of Muslim prayers.
Riots that included the use of firebombs, rock throwing and tire burning were reported by Israeli security forces in several locations. The army said troops were acting to disperse the demonstrators.
Palestinian officials said at least 20 people were hurt, most of them from tear gas.
Egged on by Hamas rulers, the protestors have been routinely demonstrating near the Gaza border in solidarity with West Bank Palestinians, and have broken through the border fence with Israel on several occasions.
During a visit to the IDF’s Gaza Division headquarters in the Western Negev last week, military officials told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu the security situation at the Israel-Gaza border was “under control.”
The riots came as security forces also clashed with Palestinian rioters in the West Bank. At least two Palestinians were wounded in confrontations with Border Police in Ramallah on Friday afternoon, while two Israelis were wounded in an earlier stabbing attack in Jerusalem.