Hamas offers $3,000 for families of those killed by Israel
GAZA CITY: Gaza’s Islamist rulers Hamas have offered to pay $3,000 to the family of any Palestinian killed by Israeli troops along the border, ahead of new expected protests.
In a statement, the group said it would support the “family of each martyr” with $3,000, while those seriously wounded would receive $500.
The payments were being provided “in light of the difficult economic conditions experienced by our people in the Gaza Strip as a result of the continued Israeli siege”.
A protest by tens of thousands near the Gaza border last Friday led to clashes in which Israeli forces killed 18 Palestinians.
Another mass protest is expected on Friday.
Israel has faced calls for an independent investigation from the European Union and United Nations chief Antonio Guterres over last week’s violence.
It has rejected the calls, saying Israeli soldiers opened fire when necessary to prevent attacks, attempts to damage the fence and infiltrations.
Palestinians say protesters were fired on while posing no threat to soldiers.
Hamas is considered a terrorist organisation by Israel, the United States and the European Union.
Israel has maintained a blockade on Gaza for more than a decade that it argues is necessary to isolate Hamas, with whom it has fought three wars since 2008.
UN officials and rights groups say the blockade amounts to collective punishment of the two million residents.