On Saturday, thousands of Palestinians flocked to Gaza's border with Israel to participate in massive demonstrations as part of "The million man march of land and return", which was called for by Palestinian factions to celebrate the 43rd Land's Day as of March 30 of each year, which also coincided with the first anniversary of the launch of the ongoing border protests along the buffer zone between Gaza and Israel.
GAZA, Palestinian Territory - Five rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip into Israel early Sunday, the Israeli military announced, following a day of mass protests that saw Israeli troops kill four Palestinians near the territory's border.
As Great March of Return organiser Ahmed Abu Artema asked: "What if 200,000 demonstrators marched peacefully and broke through the fence east of Gaza and entered a few kilometres into the lands that are ours, holding the flags of Palestine and the keys to return, accompanied by global media, and then set up tents inside and established a city there?"
Israel said some protestors had begun throwing rocks and explosives towards soldiers positioned nearby.
Senior Hamas official Bassem Naim called Saturday's protest "a very important message" that thousands had gathered "peacefully to raise their voice against aggression and the imposed siege on Gaza".
On Monday, a rocket fired from Gaza struck a house north of the Israeli commercial capital Tel Aviv, wounding seven people. In the evening, the ministry said another 17-year-old died hours after being shot in the chest in a different protest location.
At least one Palestinian was killed and 13 protesters were wounded by Israeli live fire, according to Palestinian medical officials.
"In the coming days we hope to conclude the negotiations and achieve a real breaking of the blockade", Yehya Sinwar, Hamas's leader in Gaza, told Reuters at one rally.
But in public remarks on Thursday, he said Israel would only undertake a broad military campaign in Gaza after exhausting all other options. IDF forces used riot dispersal and firing methods in accordance with the rules of engagement. Israel has sealed off the narrow Gaza Strip due to security concerns, which affects almost every aspect of life here, from food to electricity to the ability to freely come and go. The operation was also launched in retaliation to rocket fire. Israeli troops fired rubber bullets and tear gas at about 150 demonstrators.
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