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Palestinian journalist shot at Gaza protest dies of wounds

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AFP |

A Palestinian journalist shot two weeks ago by Israeli forces on the Gaza border has died, Israeli and Palestinian sources said Wednesday, the second journalist killed in a month of unrest.

Ahmed Abu Hussein, 25, was shot on April 13 while covering protests along the Gaza border for Palestinian media.The Gaza health ministry announced he had died after receiving treatment inside Israel, which the Sheba hospital near Tel Aviv confirmed.His body was later transferred to Gaza, health officials said, ahead of a Thursday funeral.

The Israeli army says its troops only open fire in self-defence or to stop protesters attempting to breach the barrier separating the territory from Israel.

Abu Hussein worked for Radio Shaab, a well-known radio station seen as close to the left-wing Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) party, as well as being a photographer for a local news agency.

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The family said the body was expected to cross from Israel late Wednesday, with the funeral to be held on Thursday.Abu Hussein was shot in the stomach while covering protests near Jabalia in northern Gaza, the health ministry in Gaza said.Images from the day appear to show him wearing a press helmet in the moments after he was shot.

Israel considers the PFLP movement a terrorist organisation.The Israeli army did not immediately comment on the incident.The Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate said in a statement it held the Israeli authorities “fully responsible for this crime” and called for prosecutions.

Abu Hussein is the second journalist to have been killed since protests broke out on March 30 after photographer Yasser Murtaja was killed on April 6 while covering the protests.Israel has since accused him of being an active member of Gaza’s Islamist rulers Hamas, a claim denied by his family and colleagues.Abu Hussein’s death brought the toll of Palestinians in Gaza killed by Israeli fire since March 30 to 41.

The Gaza health ministry announced he had died after receiving treatment inside Israel, which the Sheba hospital near Tel Aviv confirmed.

Most of the Palestinians killed by Israel since the start of “March of Return” protests on March 30 were shot by snipers on the border, while a few others were killed by Israeli artillery or air strikes.

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No Israelis have been injured.The deaths have led to calls for investigation from the United Nations, European Union and others but these have been rejected by Israel.The Israeli army says its troops only open fire in self-defence or to stop protesters attempting to breach the barrier separating the territory from Israel.

The return march protests are calling for millions of Palestinians to be allowed to return to their historic homes, that are now inside Israel.Israel says such a return would destroy its identity as a Jewish state and accuses Hamas of seeking to use the protests as a means of violence.


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