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Israeli Forces Open Fire on Palestinian Protesters

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Published on May 15, 2011

"Palestinians are feeling emboldened and inspired by the uprisings elsewhere [in the Middle East]." Israeli forces have fired on groups of protesters at borders with the Palestinian territories, Syria and Lebanon.

In one incident, thousands of Palestinian supporters from Syria entered the Golan Heights, Israel says.

Palestinians are marking the Nakba or Catastrophe, their term for the founding of the Israeli state in 1948.

Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were forced out of their homes in fighting after its creation.

Responding in a televised address to Sunday's violence, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he hoped "calm and quiet will quickly return, but let nobody be mistaken, we are determined to defend our borders and sovereignty".

Later on Sunday, security forces in the Egyptian capital Cairo fired warning shots and tear gas to break up protests outside the Israeli embassy.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called for calm and urged all sides to show "utmost responsibility".

In a statement, he said there was an "unsustainable status quo in the Arab-Israeli conflict, which is only thrown into sharper relief by the profound political changes now under way in the region" and called for a renewed effort to reach comprehensive peace in the region.

Read the rest of the news article at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middl...

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-afric...

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