Hamas-led Palestinian protests of the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem spun out of control on Monday, with protesters setting fires and launching projectiles at the Gaza border and attempting at least one failed terror attack. As a result, according to the Hamas-run health ministry, dozens of Palestinians have been killed by IDF forces and hundreds injured.
Some footage of the rapidly-escalating situation has emerged. Here is video of the scene outside the U.S. Embassy when Member of Knesset Mohammad Baraka arrived to lead the protest:
And here is footage from the Gaza border:
The Jerusalem Post has been providing live updates on the situation. So far, according to the Gaza Health Ministry, over 40 Palestinians have died as a result of Israel's response to the violence at the border. Among those killed were three armed Palestinians who tried to bomb the Gaza-Israel border near Rafah.
"Soldiers fired and killed the three perpetrators of the attempted attack, the IDF said, which took place at one of the most violent scenes of clashes between Palestinian protestors and IDF troops," JPost reports. "In addition, an IDF plane targeted a Hamas outpost in the Jabaliya area of the Gaza Strip after identifying it as the source of gunfire at IDF troops. No IDF troops were injured."
Among the most recent developments is the PLO's announcement that it will conduct strikes across the West Bank and Gaza. Reuters reports:
The Palestine Liberation Organization called a general strike across the West Bank and Gaza on Tuesday in response to the deaths of Gazans killed by Israeli troops at a border protest, the official Palestinian news agency Wafa said Monday. The agency reported that PLO Executive Committee member Wasel Abu Yousef announced a "complete strike" across the Palestinian Territories "to mourn the martyrdom" of those killed in Gaza on Monday.
The IDF says it has struck five targets at a Hamas military camp. JPost reports:
The Israeli air force struck five targets in a Hamas military camp near the city of Jabaliya, the IDF said. The strike came following three “serious” incidents in which IDF troops were targeted by Palestinians along the border fence. According to the army, 40,000 Palestinians are demonstrating in 12 different locations along the border fence. The military said that compared to the demonstrations over the past seven weeks, the level of violence has intensified significantly and they are seeing many more women on the front lines.
As usual, Israel's enemies in the Middle East blame Israel for the violence, including Turkey's Foreign Ministry, which condemned the IDF's "massacre" of Palestinians participating in "peaceful" demonstrations. "We curse the massacre carried out by Israeli security forces, encouraged by this step, on the Palestinians participating in peaceful demonstrations," said the ministry in a statement Monday.