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Israeli navy detains 5 Gaza fishermen, confiscate boat

Aug. 16, 2016 12:18 P.M. (Updated: Aug. 16, 2016 8:54 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- Israeli naval forces detained five Palestinian fishermen and confiscated their fishing boat on Monday evening off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip.

A Gaza-based human rights activist identified the fishermen as Fadi Mahmoud Bakr, Eyhab Jawad Bakr, Mamdouh Numan Bakr, Wael Nabil Bakr, and Khamis Ziad Minawi, adding that they were detained while fishing off the coast of Beit Lahiya.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that a Palestinian vessel deviated from the designated fishing zone and Israeli forces called the vessel to stop, before opening warning shots into the air. The spokesperson added that the Palestinians were detained for further questioning. 

Israeli forces regularly detain Palestinian fisherman off the coast of Gaza working within the fishing zone, generally for alleged security reasons.

According to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), Israeli forces detained 71 fishermen and confiscated 22 fishing boats throughout 2015.

The Israeli army also regularly open fires on Palestinian fishermen and farmers along the border areas, despite a ceasefire agreement that ended the 2014 war.

The practice has in effect destroyed much of the agricultural and fishing sectors of the blockaded coastal enclave.
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