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ISM Gaza Strip: Shots against farmers and internationals in Al Faraheen

In the morning of Sunday the 23rd of November, several international human rights observers accompanied Palestinian farmers to plough their field close to the green line, in the village of Al Faraheen, east of Khan Younis. At about 10 o’ clock Israeli soldiers behind the fence started to shoot. A tank could also be seen moving in the area behind the fence. The international HROs used their megaphones to communicate the international presence and to demand that the shooting cease immediately.

The Palestinian farmers decided to postpone the work. The international HROs remained in their positions till the moment that it seemed that the shooting has stopped. Then they accompanied the Palestinian farmers towards their houses. At some point there was some more shots, probably against one of the Palestinian residents who had left the group, following the path to his house, cross the field. The international HROs immediately positioned themselves between him and the green line, from were the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) soldiers were shooting, until he left the area. Despite the fact that the agricultural work was not concluded, the international presence may have prevented a more serious attack like the ones that often occur all along the Green Line, leaving Palestinian civilians injured or even dead. (An incident like that was reported on the 24th of November, at the northern border of Gaza strip, where a Palestinian civilian was shot in the leg by Israeli troops).

The internationals remained in Al Faraheen and accompanied another Palestinian family who lives near the Green Line and has repeatedly suffered attacks from the IOF before. For a while, they accompanied the family and their friends during their work in the vegetable garden right beside the house, where they have been attacked by the Israeli army many times in the past. Some of the internationals continued the accompaniment for the rest of the day and throughout the night, until the next morning. No other incidents were reported.