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Israel charges 2 Gazans with terrorism over Great March of Return

Gazans setting kites on fire during the Great March of Retrun, May, 2018 [Twitter]
Gazans setting kites on fire during the Great March of Retrun, May, 2018 [Twitter]

Israeli authorities have charged two Gazans they kidnapped from the border fence with terrorism over their participation in the Great March of Return, according to Ynet News.

Ahmed Amawi, 26, and Mu’ataz Abu Eid, 20, who had protested consistently at the border since March, were captured by Israeli soldiers after they managed to break through the fence and escape into Israel during the night at the end of last month.

Israel has claimed that the two Gazans are members of Hamas, they launched kites from Gaza during the protests in the weeks before and sought to attacks settlers, although no evidence has been presented against them.

READ: Israel publishes list of Hamas ‘most wanted’

The two have been charged with attempted incitement to murder, activity in a terror organisation, arson as an act of terror, attempted arson as an act of terror and armed infiltration, among numerous others.

Israel’s actions in the Gaza Strip last week, which resulted in the deaths of at least 65 protesters in non-violent demonstrations on the border, have warranted international condemnation. Thousands of Palestinians had gathered on the Gaza Strip’s eastern border to take part in peaceful protests marking the 70 years since the Nakba, the “Catastrophe” which led to the founding of Israel and to stand against the relocation of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Israel has maintained that the protests were organised by Hamas and that its use of force against the unarmed civilians was justified, with Israel’s Minister of Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan stating that the rising death toll “did not indicate anything” as Palestinians were like Nazis.

READ: Palestinians ask ICC to investigate Israel human rights violations

The Israeli government also claimed that the border protests constitute a “state of war” in which international humanitarian law does not apply

Last week, reports surfaced that the International Criminal Court (ICC) at The Hague is looking into whether it should try Israel over the deaths of civilians since the end of March. According to a source with the court, prosecutors were taking part in preliminary examinations.

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