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Prevented from reaching Gaza border, Goldin family, supporters scuffle with cops

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The family of a fallen IDF soldier being held in Gaza briefly scuffled with police on Friday as they tried to reach the Strip’s border along with hundreds of supporters as part of a protest.

Marchers called on the government to act to return the bodies of Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, as well as two other Israelis in Hamas captivity.

The march occurred shortly before Israel launched a military operation in Gaza against the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group, which has for days been threatening to attack Israeli targets near the border. The IDF had closed off most major highways along the Gaza border on Tuesday amid concerns of strikes by the group following the arrest of its West Bank leader.

Police said demonstrators violated an agreement not to proceed past the Yad Mordechai Junction, roughly two miles north of the Erez pedestrian crossing into the enclave.

The march was led by the Goldin family, marking eight years since their son Hadar was killed during the 2014 Gaza War and later kidnapped by Hamas fighters along with the body of slain soldier Oron Shaul. The demonstrators also called for the release of Avera Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed, two civilians with special needs who crossed into Gaza on their own volition later that year and have been held by Hamas ever since.

Police said demonstrators refused repeated calls to cease advancing toward the border and that one participant was briefly detained for disorderly conduct. “The Israel Police will allow the right to........

© The Times of Israel

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