‘Massacre’ in Gaza as US opens embassy in Jerusalem

More than 40 Palestinians were killed and over 1,600 injured in Gaza by Israeli soldiers as thousands demonstrated along the border fence protesting against the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem on Monday.

This was the bloodiest day in Gaza since the 2014 war with Israel. The Palestinian Authority government based in the occupied West Bank called it a “terrible massacre.” Among the dead was a 14-year-old.

Israeli snipers positioned on the other side of the border opened fire on protesters as they tried to break through the fence.

According to Israel’s military, over 35,000 Palestinians took part in violent riots in 12 locations along the security fence. They were hurling firebombs, explosive devices and burning tyres to set fires in Israeli territory and harm its troops.

The United States opened its Jerusalem embassy on Monday in a ceremony that included a video address by President Donald Trump.

Trump hailed the embassy opening as “a great day for Israel”.

Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu said Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people for the past 3,000 years and of the state for 70 years. It will remain the capital for all time, he said.

US ambassador to Israel David Friedman referred to the embassy’s location as “Jerusalem, Israel” drawing wild applause.

US Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan called the embassy “a long overdue recognition of reality.”

Some 800 guests attended the ceremony.

Saeb Erekat, Palestine Liberation Organisation secretary-general, called the embassy opening a “hostile act against international law”.