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Israel/Palestinian Terr.: At least four killed in Gaza protests April 20 /update 15

Israel Defense Forces (IDF) kill at least four people and wound 729 others in Gaza Strip protests on April 20 as protest campaign continues along Israel-Gaza border

20 Apr 08:47 PM UTC
TIMEFRAME expected from 4/20/2018, 12:00 AM until 5/15/2018, 11:59 PM (Asia/Jerusalem). COUNTRY/REGION West Bank

Event

Israel Defense Forces (IDF) personnel killed at least four Palestinian demonstrators and wounded some 729 others, including 156 with live ammunition, during the fourth consecutive Friday of large demonstrations along the Israel-Gaza border on April 20. Around 3000 Palestinians reportedly participated in Friday's protests, burning tires, hurling stones, and flying Molotov cocktails at IDF personnel using kites. On Thursday, April 19, Gazan activists announced that they had moved protest tents - set up roughly 500-700 m (1640-2300 ft) from the Israel-Gaza border - about 50 m (164 ft) closer to the border in order to display their resolve.

On Friday morning (local time), the IDF dropped leaflets in Gaza warning Palestinians to avoid engaging in violent acts against Israeli forces and to not approach the border barrier during the protests. Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Lieberman had previously warned that the IDF may use lethal force against Palestinian protesters who demonstrate near the border fence. Continuing Palestinian protests, clashes between Palestinian protesters and IDF troops, and associated casualties are expected along the Israel-Gaza border in the coming days and weeks as the six-week tent city protests are scheduled to continue until May 15.

Context

Large-scale Palestinian demonstrations have recently taken place in the Gaza Strip as part of a six-week tent city protest along the Israel-Gaza border. Dozens of Palestinians have been killed and thousands of others wounded in clashes with IDF personnel since the protests began on March 30. Smaller related protests have taken place in the West Bank.

Advice

Individuals present in Israel and the Palestinian Territories are advised to avoid all protests or other public gatherings due to the high risk of violence and to monitor developments to the situation. Due to the underlying terrorist threat, travelers in Israel, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip are advised to report any suspicious objects or behavior to the authorities. Some Western governments advise their citizens against all travel to the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and areas near the Israeli-Lebanese, Israeli-Syrian, and Israeli-Egyptian borders.

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