Israel launches airstrikes against 'terrorist' targets in Gaza


The protests escalated Monday, the day the U.S. Embassy opened in Jerusalem, which also was the 70th anniversary of Israel declaring its independence. Hospitals in the Gaza Strip have been overstretched by the more than 2,700 people injured along Israel's border fence, including 1,300 by gunfire, United Nations agencies said in Geneva.

"The relocation of the United States Embassy to Jerusalem can only further heighten tensions in the region and complicate the search for a lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict", Mahamat added.

The affiliation may matter little to those who have deemed Israel's response to the protests to be heavy-handed. Israel's departing ambassador, Eitan Na'eh, received an uncustomary search at Istanbul airport in an apparent attempt at public humiliation, including being forced to take off his shoes. The event was intentionally captured by Turkish media.

Israel's Foreign Ministry summoned Turkey's temporary charge d'affaires in Tel Aviv, Umut Deniz, on May 16.

The Arab League called Thursday for an worldwide probe into alleged crimes by Israeli forces against Palestinians following mass protests on the Gaza border that saw dozens of demonstrators killed.

Earlier this week, at least 58 people were killed and 2,700 people injured in the bloodiest day of protests in Gaza since the 2014 war with Israel.

Tens of thousands of people have been protesting along the fortified border with Israel since 30 March, calling for Palestinian refugees and their descendants to be allowed to return to their homes now inside Israel.

The Israeli army said three of the Palestinians killed on Monday were trying to plant explosives at the border fence.

While Israel has found itself under global condemnation, it has pushed back against criticism with the backing of the US.

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"Lethal force may only be used as a measure of last, not first, resort, and only when there is an immediate threat to life or serious injury", said Rupert Colville, a spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, in a statement.

Slamming the Israeli response, Erdogan said Monday that Israel is "a terror state" that has committed "a genocide". The Palestinians, who seek east Jerusalem as capital of their hoped-for state and vehemently oppose the USA move, recalled their ambassadors to four European countries that had supported it.

Guatemala inaugurated its embassy in Jerusalem, the second country to move its main diplomatic mission from Tel Aviv.

The Russian top diplomat stated that Moscow was ready to fully facilitate dialogue between Palestine and Israel on the Jerusalem issue.

"We are facing a state of blatant aggression against global law and legitimacy which was embodied by the U.S. embassy's transfer in the occupying state to Jerusalem", said Abul Gheit.

Netanyahu profusely praised Guatemala for making the move and noted that it came only two days after the United States opened its embassy in Jerusalem.

Israel has every right to defend its borders, including the boundary with Gaza. In Guatemala, a significant number of people are Catholic or Evangelical.

"We have no choice but to stop the North-South high-level talk scheduled for the 16th under the ugly circumstances where there is indiscreet North-invading war fuss and fight rampage", KCNA said.