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Palestinians riot along Gaza border for 4th night, after Israel allows goods in

Gazans from so-called ‘night confusion units’ set tires alight and lob improvised explosives at fence, on day construction materials pass through Kerem Shalom crossing

Palestinians burn tires during a protest along the border fence with Israel, east of Gaza City in the central Gaza Strip, on August 30, 2021. (Mohammed Abed/AFP)
Palestinians burn tires during a protest along the border fence with Israel, east of Gaza City in the central Gaza Strip, on August 30, 2021. (Mohammed Abed/AFP)

Hundreds of Palestinians demonstrated on the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel on Tuesday for a fourth straight night of riots.

Gazans from so-called “night confusion units” set tires alight and rolled them toward soldiers stationed along the frontier, and lobbed improvised explosives, in a repeat of violence seen along the border the previous three nights.

As Israeli troops responded, the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza said that one Palestinian was moderately wounded from Israel Defense Forces live fire.

There was no immediate comment from the IDF and no reports of injuries on the Israeli side.

The “night confusion units” behind the border riots do not officially tie themselves to Hamas, though their activities could not take place without the approval of the terror group that rules the Strip.

The groups, which are affiliated with various terror factions, have said that the nightly riots on the border will continue until at least Thursday, starting at around 8 p.m. each evening.

Masked Palestinian demonstrators gather on August 30, 2021, during a protest along the border fence with Israel, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. (Said Khatib/AFP)

The latest violence on the border came as Israel allowed dozens of truckloads of construction materials into the Strip on Tuesday.

Bassam Ghabin, director of the Palestinian side of the Kerem Shalom cargo crossing, said that 30 truckloads of cement, 120 trucks of gravel and 15 trucks of steel entered Gaza. He said that the materials began entering on Monday, and that the crossing was operating almost at the same capacity as before May’s 11-day war.

An Israeli security official, speaking on condition of anonymity under policy guidelines, confirmed that building materials had entered Gaza. He had no specific details, but said that they came under previously announced government decisions.

Speaking to defense officials Monday night, IDF chief Aviv Kohavi warned that Israel would not tolerate the border riots.

“Calm and security will allow an improvement in civil conditions, but rioting and terror will lead to a strong response or operation,” he said.

“We have improved our attack capability in the Gaza Strip and our operational plans and if quiet isn’t preserved in the south, we won’t hesitate to set out on another campaign,” he said. “The reality of [Gazans’] lives can be completely different and significantly improved — but it will not be the case as long as terrorist acts of any kind continue.”

In the past, Gazans involved in “night confusion” activities have burned tires, hurled explosive devices, and played fake rocket alert noises in an attempt to confuse Israeli residents living near the border and harass soldiers guarding the border.

In response to Saturday riots, as well as two fires sparked in southern Israel by balloons carrying incendiary devices launched from Gaza, between Saturday and Sunday overnight, the IDF struck a Hamas military compound used for training and weapon production, and the opening of a “terror tunnel.”

Palestinian protesters clash with Israeli forces during a protest at the Israel-Gaza border, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip, on August 25, 2021. (Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

Gaza has seen several border protests in the past two weeks.

On Saturday, the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry announced that a 13-year-old boy who had been critically injured in clashes with Israeli soldiers on August 21 succumbed to his wounds.

Omar Abu Nil was allegedly shot by Israeli forces during the violent protest that saw hundreds of Palestinian protesters approach the fence, throw stones, and burn tires. Israeli troops responded with tear gas, rubber bullets, and a form of live fire.

Besides Abu Nil, one other Palestinian and one Israeli police officer were fatally wounded during the clashes. The other Palestinian, Osama Dueij, passed away on Thursday. Hamas claimed Dueij as a member of its armed wing.

The Israeli police officer, Barel Shmueli, 21, died of his wounds at Soroka Medical Center in Beersheba Monday afternoon. Shmueli was shot at point-blank range when a Palestinian man approached a slit in a barrier where Shmueli was stationed and fired a pistol at him.

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