Israeli forces directly fired on Palestinians Friday as they marched in a peaceful demonstration demanding the right of return for refugees.
Troops used live ammunition to shoot Palestinians dead as they amassed along Gaza’s eastern border with Israel, Ayman as-Sahbani, head of the emergency ward at Gaza City’s Al-Shifa Medical Complex, told Anadolu Agency.
Al-Sahbani said some of the severely wounded who had been brought to the hospital had been shot in the head and chest.
More than 200 Palestinians with injuries to their feet from bullets had been brought to the hospital since Friday morning, he added.
Al-Sahbani said operating rooms at the hospital were full of wounded people waiting in line and the number of injured exceeded the capacity of health centers in Gaza.
He called on aid organizations to help the health ministry with intensive care and surgery rooms and medical supplies to treat the wounded.
The Palestine Red Crescent said 118 people had been injured in the cities of Ramallah, Nablus, Qalqilya and Jericho, including one from a live bullet, 17 from plastic bullets and scores from tear gas.
Tens of thousands of Palestinians in the blockaded Gaza Strip converged on the border Friday to reaffirm their right to return to their homes in historical Palestine.
Friday’s mass demonstrations were also intended to pressure Israel to lift its more than decade-long blockade of the Hamas-run Gaza Strip.
Despite the peaceful nature of Friday’s rally, at least 15 Palestinian protesters have been killed by Israeli troops deployed along the border.