Israel is tightening its blockade on Gaza by stopping fuel deliveries

Mass protests and clashes have rocked Gaza's border with Israel since late MarchMore

Kites, balloons and even inflated condoms have been sent over by Palestinians in Gaza to start wildfires in Israeli fields.

Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said the group was responsible for today's barrage against Israel and that it was carried out "in response to the Israeli air strikes".

The drill was launched in the Negev region, with Beersheba serving as a stand-in for the type of urban terrain IDF soldiers would encounter in Gaza's cities, reported Israel's Channel 10 news.

Later, Mr Lieberman announced that Kerem Shalom would be closed for fuel deliveries and the distance which Gaza's fishermen would be allowed from the coast reduced from six nautical miles (12 km) to three.

Israeli forces and settlers pulled out of Gaza in 2005 and the enclave is now ruled by the Islamist group Hamas.

On Saturday, Israel launched its heaviest bombardment since the 2014 war, striking what it said were militant targets in the Gaza Strip.

Many Israeli groups have been critical of the regime when it comes to how it has dealt with Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and in the Gaza Strip over the years.

Israel struck at two Hamas facilities on Monday as Palestinians continued launching incendiary kites and balloons into Israel.

Hamas warned Israel of "dangerous consequences" for the new fresh restrictions, calling them "a crime against humanity". An ultra-nationalist Israeli group has published a video accusing the heads of four Israel's leading human rights organisations, including "Breaking the Silence", of being "foreign agents" funded by Europe and supporting Palestinians "involved in terrorism".

The Israeli non-governmental organisation Gisha, which promotes freedom of movement for Palestinians, said the "shutting down of Gaza's main lifeline is an abhorrent act of illegal collective punishment against the two million residents of Gaza, most of whom are children".

From right, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot, Military Secretary to the Prime Minister Brig.

The devices have sparked hundreds fires in southern Israel, burning more than 2,830 hectares (7,000 acres) of forest and farmland and causing hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage, officials say.

Egypt has also maintained the blockade with Israel over the strip, in an attempt to weaken Hamas.

Since the protests and clashes broke out along the border on March 30, at least 141 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire.

However, it appeared that neither Israel nor Hamas were seeking further escalation and there were no reports of serious casualties on either side of the border.

Israel says its use of live fire is necessary to defend its borders and stop infiltrations.

At the same time, Egypt announced that it would close the Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Sinai.

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