Palestinian killed by Israel fire ahead of border protests: Gaza ministry

"At least 259 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire since the protests began, the vast majority along the border"
Palestinian killed by Israel fire ahead of border protests: Gaza ministry

A Palestinian was killed by Israeli fire on the Gaza border early Saturday, the territory's health ministry said, hours ahead of planned mass protests.

The ministry said Mohammed Saad, 20, died after being hit inthe head with shrapnel caused by Israeli army fire east of Gaza City.

Protesters at the site said he had been taking part in anovernight rally ahead of the main demonstration scheduled for Saturdayafternoon.

They said he was more than 100 metres (yards) from theheavily-fortified border fence when he was hit and had been on crutches due toa previous injury.

An Israeli army spokeswoman declined to comment.

Thousands are expected to demonstrate on Saturday afternoonat various points along the Gaza-Israel border, one year after the start ofregular mass protests demanding the right of return for Palestinian refugees tohomes now in Israel.

At least 259 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli firesince the protests began, the vast majority along the border.

Two Israeli soldiers have also been killed.

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