Israeli fighter jets struck dozens of sites across the Gaza Strip early on Saturday as fighters fired about 30 rockets into Israel, in the heaviest exchange of fire in several weeks.
The fighting followed a bloody day of border protests, in which Israeli forces shot and killed five Palestinians protesting along the perimeter fence dividing Hamas-ruled Gaza and Israel.
The fighting and bloodshed complicated the mission of Egyptian mediators, who have intensified shuttle diplomacy to achieve calm and prevent a full-blown conflict between Hamas and Israel.
...Islamic Jihad, a smaller group, implicitly claimed responsibility for the rocket fire. It issued a statement saying that it normally exercises restraint, but it "can no longer stand idle before the continued killing of innocents and bloodshed by the Israeli occupation".
It was not immediately clear whether Islamic Jihad, which sometimes acts independently of Hamas...
... In northern Gaza, a 27-year-old man died after being shot in the head, the ministry said. It added that 170 other protesters sustained various injuries.
On Wednesday, Egyptian intelligence officials met representatives of Palestinian factions in Gaza. Loay Qarouti of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine General Command said the mediators asked them "to protect the lives of protesters and minimise losses among them".
... Since the marches began six months ago, at least 210 Palestinians present or taking part in the protests have been killed and more than 18,000 were wounded.
Israel has come under heavy international criticism for what many see as excessive use of force and the large number of unarmed people who have been shot.
In the West Bank, a 33-year-old Palestinian man was killed and nine others wounded by live rounds, one in critical conditions, as the Israeli forces confronted stone throwers in a village near Ramallah city, doctors said.