A Palestinian boy shot by Israeli occupation forces in the Gaza Strip has died of his wounds, a medical official said on Friday.

The 16-year-old, identified as Adnan Abu Khater, was shot on Thursday near the border in the northern Gaza Strip, sources on both sides said.

Ashraf al-Qudra, a spokesman for the emergency services in Gaza, said in a statement that Khater died of his wounds after soldiers shot him in the leg east of Jabaliya.

An Israeli army spokeswoman said of Thursday’s incident that soldiers identified “a number of suspects” damaging the border fence.

She claimed the soldiers asked them to halt “numerous times but the suspects continued vandalizing the fence” so they shot him.

But occupation forces routinely fire at Palestinians in the vicinity of the border, almost always claiming that they were “tampering” with the fence or attempting to plant explosives.

“Soldiers then resorted to aiming fire at the individuals’ lower extremities… and “reported one hit.”

Palestinians say those accusations are unsubstantiated. A report by Israeli rights group B’Tselem said Israeli forces killed nine Palestinians in Gaza over 2013, most of them in border shootings.

Later Thursday, Palestinians fired a projectile that hit near the border fence, an Israeli police spokeswoman said, causing no harm or damage.

Israeli warplanes early on Friday carried out a series of strikes against Gaza in response, the occupation forces said.

There were no immediate reports of injuries in Gaza.

On Sunday, Palestinians said two people were wounded by Israeli tank fire in central Gaza.

Exchanges of fire between the sides peaked last Tuesday, when a sniper inside Gaza killed an Israeli repairing the border fence.

Israel responded against “terror sites” in Gaza with warplanes and tanks, killing a three-year-old girl and wounding at least six people.

(AFP, Al-Akhbar)

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