An IDF officer was wounded as a result of 11,000 Gazans rioting on the Israeli border on Friday. The rioters burned tires and threw rocks, explosive devices, and grenades at IDF troops who responded with crowd control measures including rubber bullets and tear gas. Rioters burned tires and launched aerial incendiary devices as well. IDF snipers resorted to live-fire as per strictly enforced rules-of-engagement. One Gazan man was arrested after infiltrating the border.
As thousands of Israeli families got ready for the Sabbath dinner, 11K Gazans rioted minutes away on the Israel-Gaza border fence, throwing explosives & grenades.
Our soldiers are there to ensure that no terrorists harm Israeli families. A duty that we proudly fulfill. pic.twitter.com/BBihlJb7Mc
— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) February 15, 2019
An officer in the IDF Border Police Undercover Unit was lightly injured in his leg by shrapnel from an explosive device.
A cluster of incendiary balloons landed in the Eshkol region of southern Israel. No injuries or damage were reported. Sappers arrived at the scene and removed the threat.
The violent riots are part of the March of Return riots that have been ongoing since late March. The Gaza Health Ministry has reported over 220 people killed in the clashes, many of them idntified as Hamas military personnel.
On Sunday, Israeli Navy patrol boats opened fire on Gazan boats. No injuries were reported.
Newly appointed IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi prioritized the southern border as especially sensitive, ordering two more Iron Dome anti-missile batteries into place, bringing the total to ten.