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Israeli gunfire kills 44 year old Gaza woman during border protests

The 44-year-old woman, Amal Mustafa Abu Sultan, killed on Friday was shot in the head

Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian woman during Gaza border protests on Friday, medics said, while the Israeli military said it opened fire in response to grenade and rock attacks and breaches of the frontier.

Ashraf Al-Qidra, spokesman for the Gaza health ministry, said 25 other Palestinians were wounded by Israeli gunfire during the mass demonstration, a weekly event along the border since March 30.

The 44-year-old woman, Amal Mustafa Abu Sultan,  killed on Friday was shot in the head, Gaza medics said.

An Israeli military spokesman said troops had faced off with around 13,000 Palestinians, some of whom threw rocks and grenades across the fenced-off border. On three occasions, Palestinians crossed into Israel before doubling back, he said.

Gaza’s health ministry says more than 250 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli troops in the protests, part of the Great March of Return protests, billed as pressing for an end to a grinding Israeli-led blockade of the enclave.

Since 30 March, thousands of Palestinians have been protesting along the eastern fence of the Gaza Strip, calling for lifting the 11-year-old Israeli siege and for their right to return to the homes from which their families were forced out as a result of the 1948 Nakba which led to the creation of the state of Israel.

On Friday, two senior Egyptian security officials left the territory after meeting with officials from Hamas and other factions. Participants said they discussed Cairo-led efforts to reconcile Hamas with the rival Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, and reduce border tensions. A Palestinian official said Egypt’s message was that Israel sought no escalation.

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