Israeli Navy Targets Fishing Boats Off Gaza Shore

30 Mar
3:51 AM

The Israeli navy Sunday targeted Palestinian fishermen with gunfire while they were sailing offshore the city of Gaza, according to a WAFA correspondent.He said the navy fired heavy gunfire towards Palestinians’ fishing boats despite sailing within the six-nautical-mile zone allocated to fishing activities at four nautical miles.

The fishermen returned to the shore quickly to escape the attack. There were no reports of casualties, however.

On March 7, Israeli naval boats opened heavy gunfire on fishermen sailing within the allowed zone six-nautical miles, killing fisherman Tawfiq Abu Rayyala, 25, who was shot with a bullet in the abdomen before succumbing to his wounds in a local hospital.

Israeli navy and army routinely open fire on Palestinian fishermen sailing within the six-nautical-mile zone, as well as farmers in farmlands along the border.

Israel and the Palestinian factions signed a ceasefire deal on August 26, ending the 2014 summer Israeli onslaught on Gaza that claimed the lives of over 2,200 people, overwhelmingly civilians.

Under the terms of the ceasefire, Israel was to immediately ease the blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip and expand the fishing zone off Gaza’s coast, allowing fishermen to sail as far as six-nautical-miles off shore.

Israel has however failed to do so, repeatedly violating the ceasefire deal through opening fire on Palestinian fishermen within the fishing zone and reducing their intake.

Israel has imposed a blockade on Gaza after Hamas won the parliamentary elections and ascended to power in 2006. The blockade was tightened after Hamas’ subsequent takeover of the coastal enclave from Palestinian Authority’s security services in 2007.

See: 03/29/15 Israeli Forces Open Fire on Demonstration at Gaza Border for further info.

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