No. 2 House Democrat Steny Hoyer Defends Israeli Military Actions in Gaza

AnalysisMay 15 2018 12:01am The Times Jerusalem embassy Trump’s new approach creates further division Richard Spencer Middle East Correspondent

Lavrov said at a news conference in Moscow on Wednesday that Israel's statement about dozens of "peaceful" protesters killed on the Gaza border by Israeli forces on Monday was an act of blasphemy. The Supreme Committee of the Great Return March, led by Hamas, refused the shipment, saying Israel was only "trying to improve its black image" and that the Palestinian people would not accept help "from the murderers of our people".

60 Palestinians, triggering a wave of global condemnation.

Organizers say the Gaza protests are civilian actions, noting the absence of Israeli casualties, compared to 107 Palestinian dead and thousands of wounded.

A large number of heads of state and government including Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, King Abdullah II of Jordan, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Afghan President Ashraf Gani, Kuwaiti Amir Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah and Mauritanian President Mohammad Veled Abdulaziz are expected to participate in the summit meeting.

Palestinians and rights groups say protesters are being shot despite posing no threat to Israeli soldiers on the other side of the heavily guarded fence.

"The protests will continue because they have not achieved their goals yet", said Hazem Qasem. Palestinians seek Israeli-annexed East Jerusalem as a future capital.

More moves came Wednesday with the Palestinian Authority calling back ambassadors in Romania, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria - all European Union members that have expressed an interest in opening embassies in Jerusalem.

Israeli forces fired on rioters when they tried to breach the border with Gaza.

Netanyahu noted that Guatemala was the second country behind the United States to recognize Israel's independence after the partition vote in the United Nations.

Israeli authorities previously independently identified 24 members of terrorist groups among the people who died during the violent assault on Israel's border coinciding with the opening of the American embassy in Jerusalem on Monday. Israel captured east Jerusalem in the 1967 Mideast war and later annexed it in a move not recognized internationally. On Monday morning, across Gaza, a tiny Mediterranean strip that has been suffocatingly blockaded by Israel and Egypt for years, loudspeakers urged Palestinians to rush to the border with Israel and protest. It also triggered a diplomatic backlash against Israel. He said Ankara was pressing members of the UN Security Council to be more active.

Leading the charge was Turkey, which on Tuesday expelled Israel's ambassador and consul.

Hamas denied it had come under Egyptian pressure to curb the protests, which provoked worldwide condemnation of Israel's deadly tactics in putting down the unrest.

Meanwhile, Paraguay has also announced relocating its embassy to Jerusalem, whereas Romania, the Czech Republic and Honduras are considering doing the same.

Marking the move, the Jerusalem municipality illuminated the walls of the Old City late Tuesday with flags of Guatemala, Israel and the United States, and a message thanking Morales.

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