Israel-Palestinian Territories

Twelve dead as Israeli troops open fire on Palestinian protestors marking 'nakba'

Palestinians across Lebanon have declared a day of morning following the killing of 10 people by Israeli troops on Sunday during clashes on the Israeli border as Palestinians marked the creation of Israel in 1948, known in Arabic as ‘nakba’. 

Reuters/Nir Elias

The Lebanese army said the 10 killed were approaching a barbed wire fence at Lebanon’s border with the Jewish state. More than 100 were also wounded when the crowd of thousands of rock-throwing refugees from the Lebanese town of Maroun came under fire from Israeli troops.

Funerals will be held on Monday in the Palestinian refugee camps of al-Bass, Burj al-Shemali, Mieh Mieh and Ain al-Hilweh all located in south Lebanon which is largely controlled by the armed group, Hezbollah.

Violence erupted elsewhere in the region on Sunday. Two people were killed in a border-breach in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights in the worst incidence of violence there since a 1974 truce accord. Police on Monday are searching the Golan for infiltrators from Syria who broke in during the clashes.

Syria has lashed out at Israel, warning it would bear full responsibility for its "criminal" actions while Lebanon has filed a complaint to the United Nations urging it to make sure that the Jewish state stop its “aggression and provocation’.

Dossier: Gaza 2009

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon expressed deep concern over the violence and urged all sides to show the “utmost responsibility”. But Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the Jewish state would defend its borders against protesters bent on denying its right to exist.

Meanwhile, Israeli naval forces fired warning shots at a Malaysian aid ship as it approached the Gaza Strip on Monday forcing the vessel to retreat to Egypt.

Shamsul Ashar from the Perdana Global Pace Foundation said the MV Finch was carrying sewage pipes to Gaza and was in the Palestinian security zone, about 400 metres from the Gaza shoreline, when it was intercepted by Israeli naval forces.

The head of the Perdana Foundation is former Malaysian premier Mahathir Mohamad. The 85-year-old was an outspoken critic of the West and Israel over the treatment of Palestinians during his two decades in power.

The foundation was also involved in the first ‘Freedom Flotilla’, which attempted to break the Israeli blockade on Gaza in 2010. A raid by Israeli naval commandos killed nine Turks on board one of the vessels.

And Israel says it will resume the transfer of Palestinian tax revenue which was frozen after a unity deal between rival Fatah and Hamas.

Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Yaalon said the funds were unblocked because the deal had not had any effect on security cooperation with the Palestinian Authority on the ground.

But he did not rule out the possibility that funds could be frozen in the future.


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