Three Unarmed Palestinians Arrested After Crossing Into Israel From Gaza, Army Says

Arrests come amid ongoing protests near border fence and calls for an investigation into Israeli actions

The Gaza-Israel border fence on April 1, 2018
Eliyahu Hershkovitz אליהו הרשקוביץ

Three unarmed Palestinians were arrested near the southern Gaza Strip late Sunday after crossing into Israel, the Israeli military said.

The incident came after eleven Palestinians were wounded, one critically, by Israeli army fire on the Gaza border earlier in the day, according to Palestinian media, as protests continued into their third day. Nine of the Palestinians were wounded by live ammunition, and one of the casualties is said to be critically wounded.

Meanwhile, Israeli forces are on heightened alert near the Gaza border fence amid the fallout from large-scale protests.

The Palestinian Health Ministry said Sunday morning that from Friday through Saturday night, 15 people were killed and 1,479 others were treated in hospitals for various injuries. According to the statement, 805 people were wounded by gunfire, 425 suffered tear gas inhalation, 154 were hit by rubber bullets and 95 sustained various other injuries.

The United States on Saturday blocked a United Nations resolution calling for an investigation into the deaths and injuries along Gaza's border with Israel, diplomats told AFP.  On Friday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for an independent and transparent investigation, his spokesman said in a statement. 

Two Palestinians were arrested Thursday after crossing the border into Israel from Gaza illegally in the fifth incident along the border in as many days.