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A wounded Palestinian is evacuated during clashes with Israeli troops at anti-Israel protests in the southern Gaza Strip on April 20, 2018. (Reuters/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa)

Four Palestinian journalists injured covering Gaza protests

April 20, 2018 2:59 PM ET

At least four Palestinian journalists were injured while covering mass protests in the Gaza Strip on April 20, 2018, according to news reports, local journalists, and the Palestinian Journalist Syndicate.

Mohammad al-Sawalhi, a cameraman for the Gaza-based media production company Gaza Media Center, was injured in his right hand by a live round fired by the Israeli military while he was filming the protests in Gaza City's eastern neighborhood of Shujaiya, according to news reports, local journalist Moneeb Saada, and the syndicate.

Pictures posted on social media show that his camera was also damaged by the impact.

Motasem al-Khatib, a photographer for the local Kanaan News Agency, and Du'aa Zo'rob, a photographer for the Hamas-affiliated local Noor News Agency, inhaled tear gas and fainted while they were covering protests east of Khan Younis , according to news reports, the syndicate, and local journalist Moneeb Saada.

Freelance photographer Ahmed Hasaballah was hit in the foot by a gas canister projected by Israeli soldiers while he was covering the protests in Khan Younis, according to news reports and syndicate member Sami Essa.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) did not immediately reply to CPJ's email requesting comment.

For the third consecutive week, thousands of Palestinians joined the protests in Gaza Strip against Israel's refusal to allow Palestinian refugees to return to their pre-1948 homes, news reports said.

Since the protests began on March 30, at least 13 Palestinian journalists have been hit by IDF gunfire including one, photographer Yaser Murtaja, who was killed, CPJ research shows.