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Israeli navy forces open fire at Gaza fishermen

Sept. 12, 2014 9:49 A.M. (Updated: Sept. 14, 2014 11:16 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli navy forces opened fire at Palestinian fishermen in Gaza early Friday, witnesses said, in the third incident off Gaza's coast this week.

Naval boats opened fire at fishermen off the coast of Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza, with no injuries reported.

Fishermen fled the area immediately.

An Israeli army spokeswoman told Ma'an that "several vessels deviated from the designated fishing zone" and turned back after Israeli forces fired warning shots.

On Wednesday, Israeli forces opened fire at a fishing boat which had allegedly gone beyond an Israeli-restricted fishing zone.

A day earlier, Israeli gunboats intercepted a Palestinian fishing boat near Beit Lahiya and detained four fishermen from the al-Sultan family.

The Aug. 26 agreement stipulated that Israel would immediately expand the fishing zone off Gaza's coast, allowing fishermen to sail as far as six nautical miles from shore, and would continue to expand the area gradually.

The restrictions crippled Gaza's fishing industry and impoverished local fishermen.
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