Palestinians clash with IDF on Gaza border; 189 said wounded
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Palestinians clash with IDF on Gaza border; 189 said wounded

Protests come amid reports Israel is in advanced talks with Hamas, via UN and Egyptian mediation, for a long-term truce

Palestinian paramedics carry an injured protester during demonstrations at the Israel-Gaza border, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on August 24, 2018. (AFP/Said Khatib)
Palestinian paramedics carry an injured protester during demonstrations at the Israel-Gaza border, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on August 24, 2018. (AFP/Said Khatib)

Some 5,000 Palestinians protested Friday along the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel, according to Palestinian reports.

The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said some 189 demonstrators were wounded in clashes with IDF troops, including 50 who were hit by live fire.

The army said rioters threw rocks and Molotov cocktails at troops.

According to Palestinian reports, Israeli snipers opened fire on two groups of Palestinians who tried to breach the border at two different locations.

One incendiary kite sent over the border from the Strip caused a fire in the Sha’ar Hanegev region.

The clashes came hours after Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman denied involvement in talks on a long-term ceasefire agreement with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Reports have proliferated that Israel is in advanced talks with Hamas, via UN and Egyptian mediation, for a long-term truce in the Strip.

Gaza has seen a surge of violence since the start of the “March of Return” protests along the border in March. The clashes, which Gaza’s Hamas rulers have orchestrated, have included rock and Molotov cocktail attacks on troops, as well as attempts to breach the border fence and attack Israeli soldiers.

A Palestinian uses a slingshot next to burning tires during clashes at the Israel-Gaza border, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on August 10, 2018. (AFP Photo/Said Khatib)

Palestinians in Gaza have also launched incendiary airborne devices toward Israel, burning thousands of acres of forest and farmland resulting in millions of shekels of estimated damages.

At least 171 Gazans have been killed by Israeli fire since the start of the clashes, according to the Hamas-run health ministry. An Israeli soldier was shot to death by a Palestinian sniper. Hamas has acknowledged that dozens of the Palestinian fatalities were members of terror groups.

Additionally, Israel and Hamas have engaged in a number of brief exchanges of fire in recent months that have seen terror groups in Gaza launch hundreds of rockets and mortars toward Israeli territory, including one earlier this month that was the largest flareup in violence since the 2014 war.

UN envoy Nickolay Mladenov and Egyptian officials have been seeking to broker a long-term truce between Israel and Hamas. The two sides have fought three wars since 2008. An Islamist terror group that seeks to destroy Israel, Hamas seized control of the Strip in 2007.

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