Hamas security tried to keep crowds from border

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Associated Press

Posted on November 23, 2012 at 10:34 AM

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — There are indications that today's gunfire along the Israeli border with Gaza won't derail the cease-fire that took effect on Wednesday.

Israeli troops opened fire to push back crowds in Gaza that were surging toward the border fence. One Palestinian was killed and 19 were wounded.

But Hamas security had tried to defuse the situation and keep the crowds away from the border.

In the past, Israel's military kept Palestinians from getting close to the fence. Soldiers routinely opened fire on people who got within a 300-yard-wide zone that was meant to keep infiltrators from getting into Israel.

Since the cease-fire, growing numbers of Gazans had entered that zone, amid expectations that the restrictions would now be lifted.

Most of those approaching the fence today were young men. But the crowds also included farmers who were hoping they could once again farm their lands in the buffer zone.

Before Wednesday's truce, eight days of fighting killed 166 Palestinians and six Israelis.

Egypt is hosting separate talks with Israeli and Hamas envoys on the next phase of the cease-fire -- a new border agreement.

In Israel, meanwhile, a poll suggests that about half of Israelis think their government should have continued its military offensive.

%@AP Links

095-c-12-(Mark Lavie (lah-VEE'), AP Middle East correspondent)-"invasion of Gaza"-AP Middle East Correspondent Mark Lavie in Cairo reports a survey indicates many are unhappy with the way their Gaza offensive ended. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *095 (11/23/12)>> 00:12 "invasion of Gaza"

097-r-07-(Palestinians chanting, in demonstration at border fence)--Palestinians chant in defiance during a protest against Israeli shootings. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *097 (11/23/12)>> 00:07

094-c-13-(Mark Lavie (lah-VEE'), AP Middle East correspondent)-"the two sides"-AP Middle East Correspondent Mark Lavie in Cairo reports Israeli forces have killed a man in Gaza. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *094 (11/23/12)>> 00:13 "the two sides"

GRAPHICSBANK: Hamas militant talks during a press conference in Gaza City, graphic element on gray (23 Nov 2012)

APPHOTO BA104: Hamas police officers prevent Palestinians from approaching the Israeli Gaza border fence in east of Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Friday, Nov. 23, 2012. Hundreds of Gaza crowds surged toward Israel's border fence with the Hamas-ruled territory, in a no-go-zone that has been kept by Israel for years to prevent infiltrators. The crowd, many returning to their farm land, were testing new agreements mediated by the Egyptians between Hamas and Israel that led to a cease-fire after eight days of cross-bordering fighting. One Palestinian was killed and 19 injured. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue) (23 Nov 2012)

<<APPHOTO BA104 (11/23/12)>>

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