Razan al-Najjar was trying to help an injured protester when she was killed by Israeli snipers. She was the 119th person to be killed by Israeli soldiers at the border protests.
“In our society women are often judged. But society has to accept us. If they don’t want to accept us by choice, they will be forced to accept us because we have more strength than any man. The strength that I showed the first day of the protests, I dare you to find it in anyone else.”
— Razan al-Najjar, Palestinian paramedic, killed on Jun 1, 2018
She had become a fixture at the weekly protests along the fence dividing the Gaza Strip from Israel, a young woman in a white paramedic’s uniform rushing into harm’s way to help treat the wounded.
As a volunteer emergency medical worker, she said she wanted to prove that women had a role to play in the conservative Palestinian society of Gaza.
“Being a medic is not only a job for a man,” Razan al-Najjar, 20, said in an interview at a Gaza protest camp last month. “It’s for women, too.”
An hour before dusk on Friday, the 10th week of the Palestinian protest campaign, she ran forward to aid a demonstrator for the last time.
Israeli soldiers fired two or three bullets from across the fence, according to a witness, hitting Ms. Najjar in the upper body. She was pronounced dead soon after.
Ms. Najjar was the 119th Palestinian killed since the protests began in March, according to Gaza health officials. Hers was the only fatality registered on Friday.
On Saturday, a group of United Nations agencies issued a statement expressing outrage over the killing of “a clearly identified medical staffer,” calling it “particularly reprehensible.”
The Israeli military has provided no explanation for the shooting but said Saturday that the case would be examined.