PressTV - Israeli forces kill 3 fishermen in northern Gaza:
Thu Feb 17, 2011 5:37PM
Yousef al-Helou, Press TV, Gaza
"Three Gazans were killed in the east of Beit Lahia in the northern Gaza strip by Israeli forces.
Gaza's ministry of health said the slain men were unarmed civilians and that no weapons were found near the bodies of the men, denying an Israeli claim that the men were allegedly attempting to sneak into Israel or plant explosives near the border fence.
Relatives of the victims said that the men were fishermen who have been working in the sea for years. Local residents said that they heard an apache helicopter and tanks opening heavy gunfire in the area just before dawn.
Human rights groups condemned what they called systematic human rights violations, and urged the international community to take action and protect civilians in the occupied Palestinian territories. This was echoed by Hamas who called on world bodies to intervene in order to put a stop to Israeli attacks. Hamas described the killings as a war crime.
Under the ongoing Israeli land and sea blockade, which has now entered its 4th year, Israel has created what it calls a 300-meter buffer zone, shooting and preventing farmers from reach their lands. Fishermen also are harassed by the Israeli navy if they exceed 3 nautical miles from the seashore.
Fishermen, farmers and gravel collectors who are already struggling to earn a living and feed their families under the crippling siege, are subject to almost daily Israeli attacks.
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