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Israeli forces level Palestinian land near Gaza border, injure 3

Dec. 17, 2015 1:13 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 17, 2015 5:30 P.M.)
GAZA (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces shot and injured three Palestinians after entering a border area in the southern Gaza Strip on Thursday in order to level Palestinian land, local residents said.

Witnesses told Ma'an that four Israeli excavators entered the border area near Deir al-Balah refugee camp before levelling the land.

Israeli soldiers fired gunshots in the area, shooting and injuring at least three Palestinians, according to witnesses.

Israeli forces frequently shoot at Palestinian farmers and other civilians inside the Gaza Strip if they approach areas near the border that the Israeli military has deemed no-go zones.

Two Palestinians have been shot and injured by Israeli forces this week while tending to their fields, according to Gaza's Ministry of Health.

A "security buffer zone" along the border between the besieged enclave and Israel extends between 500 meters and 1500 meters onto Palestinian land, making large portions of agricultural land off-limits for farmers.

The Israeli military has made at least 50 military incursions into the Gaza Strip since the start of the year, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
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