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Gaza fishermen shot by Israel navy, second day in a row

Israel to return 20 boats to Gaza fishermen on 2 July 2019 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Gaza fishermen on 2 July 2019 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Israeli naval forces fired rubber coated metal bullets toward Palestinian fishermen off the northern Gaza coast for the second day in a row, reported Wafa news agency.

Two fishermen were injured after being shot whilst being chased by Israeli forces, forcing them to return to shore.

The fishermen were moved to a hospital in Gaza for treatment, where their condition was described as moderate.

According to the Times of Israel, the Israel Defense Forces claimed to have acknowledged that troops opened fire, but did not confirm any Palestinian injuries.

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Israeli occupation soldiers also reportedly shot and injured a 23-year-old fisherman in the hand and leg yesterday, with rubber coated bullets.

He was immediately taken to a local hospital in the northern Sudaniya coast and has since been receiving care, reported Wafa.

Local sources added that other fishermen who were on-board survived the heavy Israeli navy shooting.

Israeli authorities have long imposed unilateral restrictions on Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip, which are routinely enforced with violent attacks by naval vessels.

Palestinian officials say Israeli naval forces frequently open fire on Gazan fishermen under the pretext that they are fishing outside the designated zone even when they have been found not to be.

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Israeli naval authorities have been enforcing a sea blockade on Gaza’s 40-kilometre-length coast, since 2007.

The blockade has restricted fishing for 4,000 Palestinian fishermen in Gaza, shrinking the fishing zone from 25 nautical miles, down to only six to nince nautical miles, off shore.

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