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Egyptian navy detains 4 Palestinian fishermen, injures another in Gaza

April 2, 2019 10:45 A.M. (Updated: April 2, 2019 11:59 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- A Palestinian fisherman was shot and injured with Egyptian live fire while fishing off the coast of Rafah, south of the besieged Gaza Strip bordering Egypt, on Tuesday morning.

Local sources confirmed to Ma'an that Egyptian naval forces entered 300 meters into Palestinian waters and attacked a fishing boat with five Palestinian fishermen aboard.

Sources also confirmed that during the attack, Egyptian forces shot and injured one of the fishermen, as well as detained the other four.

The injured fisherman managed to flee the boat, while Egyptian forces detained the others.

Sources identified the injured fisherman as Muhammad Abu Suleima. However, his medical condition remained unknown.

The detainees were identified as Sahib Abu Suleima, Khaled Kanaan, Raafat Kanaan, and Musaab Kanaan.

Following the attack, Egyptian naval forces confiscated the fishing boat and sailed it towards an unknown location.

No reason was provided for the attack.

While reports of Egyptian forces opening fire at Gazans are uncommon, Israeli military incursions inside the besieged Gaza Strip and near the "buffer zone" which lies on both land and sea sides of Gaza, have long been a near-daily occurrence.

Egypt upholds an Israeli military blockade on Gaza, keeping borders largely closed and limiting imports, exports, and the freedom of movement of its residents.

The threat from Egyptian forces comes as Palestinian fishermen already face daily risks in order to make a living, including routine harassment from Israeli naval forces, confiscation of boats and materials, detention and potentially death.

Israeli forces open fire towards Palestinian fishing boats on a daily basis.

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