Bloodshed in Gaza

The inauguration of the US embassy in Jerusalem, embodying one of President Donald Trump’s most controversial promises, resulted in a bloodbath Monday in the Gaza Strip, where 52 Palestinians were killed by gunfire Israeli.

This is the deadliest day of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since the summer 2014 war in the Gaza Strip.

These events have given rise to serious international concern in a context of already strong regional tensions and uncertainties.

Opponents of Israel and human rights organizations have again condemned the Jewish state for disproportionate use of force.

A new mobilization is scheduled for Tuesday, the Palestinians commemorating May 15 the “Nakba”, the “catastrophe” that constituted for them the creation of Israel in 1948, synonymous with exodus for hundreds of thousands of them.

While US and Israeli officials dressed in pomp and circumstance celebrated a “historic” moment and the strength of their alliance under a vast white tent planted on the grounds of the new US embassy in Jerusalem, tens of thousands of Palestinians protested all day, a few dozen kilometers away, in the blockaded Gaza Strip.

The most determined have faced, at the risk of their lives, the firing of Israeli soldiers by throwing stones and trying to force the heavily guarded security fence that separates the enclave and Israeli territory.

The most resolute protesters fought the shots of Israeli soldiers as they tried to force the heavily guarded security fence that separates the Gaza Strip from Israeli territory.
The most resolute protesters fought the shots of Israeli soldiers as they tried to force the heavily guarded security fence that separates the Gaza Strip from Israeli territory.
AP, KHALIL HAMRA
Israel had warned that it would use “all means” to protect its soldiers and the barrier, and prevent any incursions into Israel of Palestinians likely to attack the neighboring civilian populations.

According to the latest report from the Gazan Health Ministry, 52 Palestinians have been killed and hundreds wounded. Among those killed are several minors under 16 years old.
According to the ministry’s latest report, 52 Palestinians were killed, including several minors under 16 years old.
According to the ministry’s latest report, 52 Palestinians were killed, including several minors under 16 years old.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has justified the use of force by his country’s right to defend its borders against the “terrorist” actions of the Islamist movement Hamas, which governs the Gaza Strip and to which Israel has waged three wars since 2008 .

Israel refutes the proclaimed pacifist character of the mobilization. It serves as a cover for Hamas’s attempts to infiltrate Israel, he said.

At least three teams of gunmen tried to dispose of explosives along the security fence, and several Hamas members disguised themselves in civilian clothes to merge with the demonstrators, the Israeli army said.

Israeli aviation and tanks also shelled several Hamas positions on Monday.

In the compound of the American embassy, ​​whose surroundings had been cordoned off by hundreds of police officers, nothing would have made it possible to discern what was happening at the same time in Gaza.

Only Trump’s counselor and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, with his wife Ivanka – the daughter of the US president – among hundreds of handpicked guests, seemed to make an oblique reference to the events.

“Those who provoke the violence are part of the problem, not the solution,” he said.
At the time of the death toll, Mr. Trump hailed the transfer to Jerusalem of the US embassy as “a great day for Israel.”

“Congratulations, we have been waiting a long time,” Trump said in a video message to the participants. Mr. Trump justified his decision as recognition of a historical reality, as Mr. Netanyahu after him.

Doubled workforce

The army had declared the periphery of Gaza military zone closed. It has almost doubled its combat forces around the enclave and in the Israeli-occupied Palestinian West Bank, where rallies have also taken place, much less massive than in Gaza.

The recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel by Trump, concretized by the transfer of the Tel Aviv embassy to Jerusalem, is a break with decades of American diplomacy and international consensus. It ignores a conviction passed in December by the UN General Assembly, and the objections of the Arab capitals.

The Arab League must meet in emergency Wednesday.

The status of Jerusalem is one of the most difficult issues of the insoluble Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The US decision fills the Israelis who see the recognition of a reality of 3000 years for the Jewish people. It also coincides with the 70th anniversary of the establishment of the State of Israel.

But this unilateral move is stifling the Palestinians for whom it represents the pinnacle of Mr. Trump’s outrageously pro-Israel bias. They interpret it as the negation of their claims on Jerusalem.

In Gaza, Bilal Fasayfes, 31, took with his wife and two children one of the buses chartered to Khan Younis to transport the protesters to the border. “We do not care if half of the people are killed, we will continue to go so that the other half lives with dignity,” he says.

Israel, which seized and annexed East Jerusalem in 1967, considers Jerusalem to be its “eternal” and “indivisible” capital. Palestinians want to make East Jerusalem the capital of the state they aspire to.

For the international community, East Jerusalem remains an occupied territory and embassies must not settle in the city until the status has been settled through negotiation.

The Palestinians perceived as a “provocation” the date chosen for the US inauguration, preceding by 24 hours the commemoration of the “Nakba”.

The Gaza Strip is, since March 30, the scene of a “march of return” which sees thousands of Palestinians gather along the border.

Since then, 106 Palestinians have been killed by the Israeli army.

“It’s not over,” an Israeli army spokesman, Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, told reporters. “According to our assessments, these events will continue. The Israeli army remains ready to defend our homes. ”

The Israeli army claims to fire live ammunition only as a last resort.

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