A Palestinian man has been killed in the buffer zone of the Gaza Strip, on Tuesday. The Israeli military has claimed that they shot the man as he was armed, and approaching the border, but Palestinian medical sources have stated that no weapon was found at the scene.The attack occurred in the northern Gaza Strip, Reuters reports, and is the latest in the ongoing of killings of Palestinians in the buffer zone Israel imposes on the Gaza Strip.
The area has increased from 50 to 300 meters since it was first imposed following the Oslo Accords, with the Israeli military claiming that the area is enforced with live fire to prevent militants from approaching the border with Israel. Palestinian sources in the Gaza Strip claim that the zone is imposed arbitrarily, with live fire reported upwards of 2 km from the border.
A UN report stated in 2010 that with the expansion of the zone to 300 meters, approximately 30% of Gaza’s agricultural land was rendered unusable.
Despite this, Palestinian farmers have continued to work in the area, both on their agricultural lands, and in the reclamation of ruble and debris from destroyed buildings.
The collection of these materials is a source of income for residents of the strip, where unemployment is over 50%, and counteracts Israel’s policy of prohibiting the required volumes of construction material into Gaza following he decimation of the coastal enclave’s infrastructure during Operation Cast Lead in December 2008 and January 2009.