Six Palestinians were killed in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday evening when a homemade explosive device they had been attempting to place on the Gaza security fence detonated prematurely during mass riots along the border with Israel.
Hundreds of Palestinians participated in the riot, hurling bombs and grenades at the security barrier.
Israeli troops responded with riot control measures.
The Hamas-run Health Ministry in Gaza claimed that two dozen additional Palestinians were injured.
“Ultimately, terrorism ends up harming everyone involved,” tweeted the IDF in response to the incident.
Wednesday’s riot took place east of Gaza City to commemorate the anniversary of Israel’s 2005 unilateral withdrawal from Gaza.
The border riot was the second in as many weeks. On Sept. 6, Palestinian rioters set off several explosive devices next to the security fence in the northern Gaza Strip.
Violent demonstrations have taken place regularly along the frontier since reports emerged late last month that Hamas had decided to restart the “Great March of Return.”
The decision was made by the “Supreme National Authority for the Great March of Return and Breaking the Siege” to begin to rehabilitate the “return camps” near the security fence in the eastern Gaza Strip.
The “Great March of Return” campaign lasted from March 30, 2018, until Dec. 27, 2019, during which period thousands of rioters, prompted by Hamas, committed acts of violence at the border on a near-weekly basis, including throwing rocks, firebombs and explosives at the security fence and IDF soldiers, as well as burning tires, yelling anti-Israel slogans and waving Palestinian flags.
On Tuesday, Palestinian terrorist organizations in Gaza fired rockets toward the Mediterranean Sea as they marked 18 years since Israel’s 2005 “defeat” and the uprooting of the coastal enclave’s Jewish communities.
The Hamas-led Joint Operations Room, which includes a dozen US-designated terror groups that coordinate attacks on the Jewish state, said the rocket fire was part of a military exercise that also included guerrilla warfare simulations.
“The defeat of the occupation from Gaza establishes its defeat from [Judea and Samaria] and heralds the liberation of Jaffa, Haifa, Jerusalem and the rest of the country, inshallah [God-willing],” said Muhammad Deif, head of Hamas’s Al-Qassam Brigades.
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh on Tuesday likewise stated that former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s disengagement plan had brought about a “new equation” in the conflict with Israel. “This defeat marked a new dawn for the Palestinian people,” said Haniyeh, calling it the “start of the comprehensive liberation phase.”
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