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Gaza: Child killed by disputed fire

March 30, 2010 12:34 P.M. (Updated: April 1, 2010 9:23 P.M.)
Gaza – Ma'an – A child was shot and killed east of the Yasser Arafat International Airport in Rafah on Tuesday, medics said.

Muawiya Hassanein, director of ambulance and emergency services in Gaza, said Muhammad Zen Ismail Al-Farmawi, 15, was shot dead near the southeasterly border by Israeli forces, while local sources who wished to remain anonymous said the death may have been an internal matter.

Hassanein said ambulances had been unable to retrieve the body because of ongoing clashes in the area, while an Israeli military spokesman said he had no knowledge of the incident.

The airport and surrounding area was the target of several Israeli airstrikes over recent weeks. The airport was destroyed in 2002 by Israeli strikes and has remained nonoperational.

The death came amidst six separate Land Day rallies across the Gaza Strip, with residents and internationals marching toward the Israeli-imposed buffer zone, which prohibits Palestinian access to some 20% of arable lands in Gaza.

The groups protest the buffer-zone by marching toward the restricted area, usually until the restricted zone is enforced by Israeli soldiers paroling the area, extending 300 meters into the Strip for the length of its border on the north, and east sides.

Israeli forces pulled out of the Gaza Strip in 2005, but maintain control of the area through land and sea blockades.
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