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Palestinian Paramedic Shot Dead by Israeli Soldiers in Gaza, 100 Others Injured
(Picture: Razan Ashraf Najjar, via Facebook)

Razan al-Najjar, a twenty-one-year-old paramedic was shot dead by Israeli soldiers in another attack on Friday (June 1, 2018). Razan was a volunteer in providing medical aid to those injured in Israeli attacks on Palestinians and was wearing her paramedic’s white coat when she was shot in the chest. In a photograph taken moments before she was shot, Razan can be seen trying to move away from the tear gas attack while carrying provisions to dress wounds.

Israeli military claims about the latest attack that took the life of Razan al-Najjar, that they were ‘retaliating’ to the ‘thousands of rioters’ who were ‘burning tyres adjacent to the security fence and attempting to damage security infrastructure.’ Palestinian Ministry of Health said that at least a hundred people were injured in the attack that killed Najjar. CNN reported that they saw some protesters burning tyres, throwing rocks and flying burning kites across the border. The Israeli military responded with live ammunition and tear gas.

Palestinians seek East Jerusalem as the capital of a state they hope to establish in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip. In the gruesome war of military occupation that Israel is waging against Palestinians, a group of people from Gaza, led by women, embarked upon what is called the Great Return March in March 2018. Gaza’s refugees seek to return to their land that is now in Israel. East Jerusalem is the desired capital for a future independent state that Palestinians are hoping for. Israel captured it in 1967 and claims that it is their capital.

According to Resolution 194 that was passed in 1948 by the United Nations, the refugees have the right to return to their villages. Israel, however, refused and shot anyone who attempted to go back to their land. It is this right that has already been guaranteed to them that the Palestinians are fighting for, unarmed.

Adding to the history of violence by Israel was the United States (US) President Donald Trump’s act of moving the US embassy to Jerusalem. World leaders and the President’s advisers themselves had advised against it stating how it will result in undoing the efforts towards achieving peace between Israel and Palestine. In a widely condemned incident, Ivanka Trump, President Donald Trump’s daughter, ‘celebrated’ the US embassy’s location shift to Jerusalem on May 15, 2018, as Israeli armed forces massacred Palestinians in Gaza.

Tear gas and rounds of gunfire were used on the Palestinians who mostly carried slingshots and stones. At least 61 people were murdered and over 2500, including women, children and journalists were injured in the ghastly attack. As a smiling Ivanka opened the embassy in Jerusalem, 60 miles away in Gaza, Israeli snipers fired at thousands of Palestinians who were demanding the right to return to homes that their families were forced to abandon in 1948.

15 May was the 70th anniversary of the day on which 7,50,000 Palestinians were evicted from their land where they had lived all their lives and for generations. This day is now called the Nakba day and the Great Return March was planned to continue till the day.

It was in the Arab-Israeli war of 1948 that 7,50,000 Palestinians were evicted from their land where they had lived all their lives and for generations. Of the people who fled the land during this war that resulted in the creation of the Jewish state of Israel, more than 2,00,000 were forced to flee to Gaza. Palestinians call this eviction ‘Nakba’ meaning catastrophe.

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