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Israeli forces open fire at Palestinians in southern Gaza Strip

March 6, 2015 12:19 P.M. (Updated: March 11, 2015 4:58 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces deployed on the border east of Khan Younis opened fire at Palestinians on Friday.

Witnesses report the shots were fired on Palestinians in their agricultural lands in eastern al-Qarrara, north of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip.

An Israeli army spokeswoman told Ma'an that soldiers fired warning shots as Palestinians approached the fence, after which the individuals turned back.

No injuries were reported.

Palestinians whose agricultural lands lie close to the buffer zone between Gaza and Israel have reported open fire from Israeli forces as a routine occurrence.

The al-Mezan Center for Human Rights reported that Israeli forces have opened fire at the Gaza border 29 times since the Aug. 26 ceasefire agreement between Israel and Palestinian militant groups, killing two Palestinians and injuring 35, including nine children.

The ceasefire agreement marked the end of a devastating 50-day war that killed more than 2,000 Palestinians, 73 Israelis, left 100,000 Gazans homeless and large swathes of the territory in ruins.

Occurrences of live fire can deter farmers from accessing their farmland, worsening agricultural production in Gaza, where over 80 percent of the population is food insecure, according to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations.

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