PROTESTS have erupted into violence on the Gaza-Israel border with one Palestinian protestor killed and 170 wounded as furious demonstrators used tennis rackets to hit back teargas canisters.
A protestor was spotted using a tennis racket to return a tear gas cannister fired by Israeli troops as demonstrations continued on the Gaza-Israel Border.
Israeli troops killed one Palestinian protester in Gaza and wounded at least 170 as demonstrators arrived for the last Friday of a six-week protest, according to Palestinian medical workers.
Israeli troops have now killed 44 Palestinians and injured more than 1,500 during the protest, known as the Great March of Return, which ends on May 15.
Organisers of the protest said they expected tens of thousands of Gazans to gather at border encampments in the coming days.
Many of the protesters are peaceful and Israeli officials say they only target protesters who threaten the border.
Hamas’ leader in the Gaza Strip, Yehiye Sinwar, compared the protesters to a “starving tiger” and warned that thousands could try to burst through the border fence into Israel next week.
He said Israel’s borders are not internationally recognized and do not have to be respected
He said: “What’s the problem if hundreds of thousands storm this fence which is not a border of a state? What’s the problem with that?”
The Israeli Defence Force said 5,000 Palestinians had participated in a violent “riot,” burning tyres, throwing rocks Israeli soldiers and launching flaming kites into Israeli territory.
A spokesman said: “IDF troops are responding with riot dispersal means and are firing in accordance with the rules of engagement.
“The IDF will not allow any harm to the security infrastructure or security fence and will continue standing by its mission to defend and ensure the security of the citizens of Israel and Israeli sovereignty, as necessary.”
Israel has been criticized by human rights groups for its lethal response to the protest.