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Israeli forces open fire at Palestinian farmers in Gaza

Dec. 25, 2016 12:04 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 25, 2016 5:29 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian farmlands east of Khan Yunis in the southern besieged Gaza Strip Sunday morning as farmers attempted to tend to their land, witnesses told Ma'an.

According to the witnesses, Israeli soldiers stationed in watchtowers near the border fence east of the town of Khuzaa fired gunshots while Palestinian farmers were trying to reach their lands. No injuries were reported.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an in response to a request for comment that after "suspects reached the border area with Israel, forces fired warning shots into the air and the suspects left the area."

Israeli military incursions inside the besieged Gaza Strip and near the “buffer zone" which lies on both land and sea sides of Gaza, have long been a near-daily occurrence.

Palestinians who work near the “buffer zone” between the Palestinian enclave and Israel often come under fire from military forces, as the Israeli military has not made clear the precise area of the designated zone.

The Israeli army regularly open fires on Palestinian fishermen and farmers along the border areas, despite a ceasefire agreement that ended the 2014 war.

The practice has in effect destroyed much of the agricultural and fishing sectors of the blockaded coastal enclave.
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