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Israeli troops shot dead two Palestinians during Friday protests at the Gaza-Israel border, the health ministry in Gaza said.

It said some 8,000 Gazans had participated in the protests at five locations along the border.

The Hamas website Safa said Friday this marks the first time all members of the political bureau have come together in Gaza.

Israel and Hamas have fought three wars since 2008.

Israel Defense Forces shelled a Hamas position in Gaza on Friday after terrorists breached the border with Israel under cover of violence taking place at the security fence.

"The IDF (Israel Defence Forces) clarified to the ship's passengers that they are violating the legal naval blockade and that any humanitarian merchandise can be transferred to Gaza through the (Israeli) Port of Ashdod", an Israeli military statement said.

Palestinians have also flown balloons and kites carrying incendiary devices across the border, starting hundreds of fires inside Israel.

Palestinians riot on the Israel-Gaza Strip border, May 14, 2018.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has canceled a South American trip planned for next week due to the situation around the Gaza Strip, an Israeli official said on Thursday, as United Nations ceasefire talks pressed on.

At least 156 Palestinians have been killed since March 30, when Palestinians in the Gaza Strip began holding nearly daily protests near the buffer zone.

At its widest extent, said the report, the access restricted area included a "no go area" reaching up to 500 meters on the Gaza side of the fence, and a "high risk area", based on Palestinian risk perceptions, extending from the "no go area" up to 1,500 meters from the fence.

Should the truce hold, a seaport and airport serving Gaza would be constructed on Egyptian territory in the Sinai Peninsula, as well as a power plant. Critics say it amounts to collective punishment of Gaza's 2 million people.

There has been violence between the Israeli army and Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip since late March in which at least 156 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli army fire.


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