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Family in agony after baby dies at Gaza protest

16 May 2018

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called on residents across the occupied West Bank to hold a general strike on Tuesday in honour of those killed in the Gaza Strip.

An Israeli spokesman disputed claims that tear gas was the cause of death, saying "we have several accounts that question the validity of this statement".

The family prefers to focus on who fired the gas rather than the series of decisions that led to a baby being a few hundred meters from the Israeli border during the protests and clashes.

Earlier, funerals began for some of those killed, coinciding with the day Palestinians call the Nakba, or "catastrophe", which commemorates when more than 700,000 of them fled or were expelled from their homes in the 1948-49 war that followed the creation of the State of Israel.

On Tuesday, journalists and family members waited for their dead in Gaza's al-Shifa Hospital, as surgeons rushed to treat injured protesters in overflowing operating rooms, while other patients lined the corridors.

"So I took her with me on the bus".

Some reports suggest she was in a tent away from the security fence when a tear gas canister was dropped via a drone.

Eight-month-old Leila al-Ghandour was exposed to the gas during major protests yesterday, in which the health ministry said 58 Palestinians were killed.

It was not immediately clear how close to the border fence Ghandour and her family were.

Asked about life in Gaza, Mr Regev acknowledged the Palestinians "live a very hard life", but blamed Hamas, claiming it does nothing for the people but "invests its efforts in a holy war - their words, not mine - against Israel". They stayed only a few minutes, Heyam insisted, before tear gas rained down on them. The vast majority have been killed by live ammunition fired by Israeli snipers but Leila was caught up in a cloud of tear gas, only temporarily painful for adults but potentially more risky for infants. She was crying a lot, then she went silent.

"I went looking for my daughter and they told me she was taken to the hospital".

In addition to 60 Palestinians killed by Israeli occupation forces on Monday - when the United States opened its embassy in Jerusalem - more than 2,400 received wounds needing hospital treatment, Gaza medics said, the Reueters News Agency reported. The PM said the violence was "destructive to peace efforts".

Family in agony after baby dies at Gaza protest