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Israeli fire kills four Palestinians in Gaza, one in West Bank

Published: Updated:

Israeli forces shot dead five Palestinian youths Friday, four in Gaza protests and one in the West Bank, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.

The ministry said they were participating in protests Friday along the perimeter fence separating the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip from Israel.

Thousands of Palestinians gathered along the fence, burning tires and throwing rocks and firebombs at Israeli troops who respond with tear gas and occasional live fire.

The Hamas group has scaled down the deadly protests over the past two weeks as Egypt intensified its shuttle diplomacy to secure calm.

Hamas wants a full lifting of an Israeli-Egyptian blockade that has beleaguered Gaza since Hamas seized power in 2007.

Since the marches began six months ago, 158 Palestinians and an Israeli soldier have been killed.