Israeli gunfire kills two Gaza border protesters, Palestinians say

Israeli Promises Gaza Reconstruction In Hamas Ceasefire

Israeli Promises Gaza Reconstruction In Hamas Ceasefire

Two Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire and another 60 injured at a protest along the Gaza border amid ongoing Egyptian efforts to broker a cease-fire, Gaza's Health Ministry said Friday.

Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a press conference.

Officials from Fatah have not joined those of Hamas, which runs the Gaza Strip, and other Palestinian factions for the talks in Cairo on the long-term truce.

According to the IDF Spokesperson's Office, thousands of Palestinians gathered and rioted in the Gaza Strip, mostly deep within its territory and not adjacent to the border fence.

Earlier Thursday an Israeli official confirmed a newspaper report that Egypt's intelligence chief visited Tel Aviv on Wednesday for consultations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other top security officials.

For more than a decade Gaza has been controlled by Hamas and subject to an Israeli-Egyptian blockade that has wrecked its economy, creating what the World Bank has described as a humanitarian crisis with shortages of water, electricity and medicine.

Food and medicines have been allowed through, but fuel and cooking gas had been intermittently blocked, including since August 2.

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Since 2007, Gaza has also been submitted to a crushing siege imposed by Israel and upheld by Egypt.

United Nations officials have repeatedly called for the blockade to be lifted, citing deteriorating humanitarian conditions in the enclave of two million people.

At the moment, the crossing is only open to people, according to Egyptian sources, but a Hamas source said goods such as cement and fuel have passed through since the May reopening.

Akram Sa'id Muammar from east of Rafah was shot by Israeli snipers, while a second serious injury was reported in the neck during the clashes in the Rafah border with Israel.

Following a spike in border violence last week, when Gaza terrorists fired some 180 projectiles at Israeli communities and Israeli airstrikes bombed dozens of Hamas terror targets in Gaza, Israel's Defense Ministry said Monday that two days of "complete calm" on the border had led to possible easing of the closure of the Kerem Shalom commercial border crossing.

Kamal and the PA president will meet to discuss both the issue of Palestinian reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah as well as the future of Gaza.

The alleged visit followed a day of large-scale protests on 14 May in the besieged Gaza Strip against the opening of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem, during which Israeli forces killed at least 65 Palestinians.

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