Why Gaza continues to bleed

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Why Gaza continues to bleed

On the 30th of March, 2018, Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian protesters near the border with the besieged Gaza Strip.

This marked the start of a new round of violence against Palestinians

–         with 34 deaths so far

–         and thousands of people wounded

In this latest violence, Israeli forces resorted to direct and indiscriminate firing against Palestinian protesters. This took place in the absence of any armed confrontation from the Palestinian protesters.

The protest of the 30th of March is an annual event, known to the Palestinian Arab people as Land Day.

Source: Mustafa Hassona – Anadolu Agency

Land Day itself commemorates a past round of Israeli violence against the people of historical Palestine – in 1976.

Annual Land Day commemoration in Sakhnin, March 30th, 2007. (Source: Activestills.org)

Back then, the Zionist state responded with armed force to a general strike by Arabs protesting their land being seized.

Little seems to have changed over the years since then.

In the past few days since the Land Day 2018 protests, Israeli forces have ramped up the use of snipers and other battlefield units against Palestinian protesters – who are attending protests in overwhelming numbers.

Protesters defy shelling and bombing from the Israeli forces in Gaza. Source: AFP

One horrifying example of its victims is Palestinian journalist Yaser Murtaja – slain by Israeli snipers this past Friday, at the age of 30.

Yaser Murtaja, a journalist, who was shot in the abdomen by an Israeli sniper. Source: Facebook

He was wearing the body armour issued to journalists, which was clearly marked “PRESS”

Such mass killings fit a broad pattern which Israeli armed forces have followed since the Deir Yassin massacre of 1948.

With the peace process started by the 1993 Oslo Accords having collapsed, Israel’s collective punishment of the Palestinian people is likely to continue.

Source: Reuters

The Trump administration in the United States will be a major factor promoting the Israeli government’s impunity.

Source: Reuters

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Ziyad Faisal

The author is the Features Editor at The Friday Times.

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