December 11, 2018

Israeli forces kill dozens in Gaza as US Embassy opens in Jerusalem

15 May 2018, 10:49 | Darnell Patrick

Ibraheem Abu Mustafa Reuters A wounded Palestinian is evacuated during the protest

Ibraheem Abu Mustafa  Reuters                   A wounded Palestinian is evacuated during the protest

Palestinian demonstrators run for cover from Israeli fire and tear gas during a protest against the US embassy move to Jerusalem and ahead of the 70th anniversary of Nakba, an event marking the mass displacement of Palestinians following the 1948 creation of Israel and Arab-Israeli war that ensued, at the Israel-Gaza border in the southern Gaza Strip May 14, 2018.

President Donald Trump campaigned on moving the United States embassy in Israel to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv, something contingents of both Democrats and Republicans have supported since the Jerusalem Embassy Act was passed into law in 1995 with overwhelming support from both houses of Congress.

"I applaud President Trump's decision to commemorate this historic anniversary with the opening of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem", Hatch said, adding that "Israel desperately needs allies".

Palestinians seek East Jerusalem as the capital of a state they hope to establish in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) says that around 50,000 Gazans are participating in the clashes while claiming that three Gazans were shot while attempting to plant explosive devices at the border fence.

Saudi Arabia condemned the demonstrators' killing without referring to the controversial inauguration of the U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.

The State Department said officials were looking at ways to identify Jerusalem as the capital, such as commonly used bold or underlined lettering or a star notation, on official maps, but said they will not be redrawn.

His daughter Ivanka and her husband Jared Kushner attended the ceremony, as they led a United States delegation that included the treasury secretary and four Republican senators.

On Tuesday, Palestinians mark the "Nakba", or catastrophe, commemorating the more than 700,000 Palestinians who fled or were expelled from their homes in the 1948 war surrounding Israel's creation.

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Israel's army said it would nearly double the number of troops surrounding the Gaza Strip and in the occupied West Bank. Guatemala and Paraguay plan to move their embassies to Jerusalem later this month.

Kushner said it was possible for both sides in the conflict to gain more than give in any peace deal.

Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) noted how despite previous presidents promising to move the embassy, Trump was the one who finally did it.

It was the deadliest day there since a devastating 2014 cross-border war and cast a shadow over Israel's festive inauguration of the new U.S. Embassy in contested Jerusalem. As in so many other areas, the swamp will resist the President as long as it can. A USA official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed the deployments bolstered security at US embassies including Israel, Jordan and Turkey. French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said the USA move flouted worldwide law.

French President Emmanuel Macron said he plans to talk to all involved parties in the region over the next few days.

Israel has accused Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other militants of using the protests - involving women, children, and elderly civilians - as a pretext to infiltrate Israel and carry out terrorist attacks.

"The not a mediator anymore", Abbas said.

The protest was the culmination of a campaign, led by Hamas and fueled by despair among Gaza's 2 million people, to break the blockade of the territory imposed by Israel and Egypt after Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007.

The approach is rare for USA administrations, which in the past often criticized both the Israelis and Palestinians during major flare-ups in violence.

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