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Israel closing Gaza crossing after violence along frontier

Last Updated Aug 19, 2018 at 7:40 am EDT

Mourners carry the body of Palestinian Hamas militant, Karim Abu Fatayer, who was shot and killed during the Friday's protest at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, during his funeral in town of Deir el-Balah, Central Gaza Strip, Saturday, Aug.18, 2018. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

JERUSALEM – Israel’s defence minister says he’s closing the country’s main personnel crossing with Gaza in response to recent violence along the frontier.

Avigdor Lieberman says Sunday that he’s shutting down the Erez border crossing.

Two Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire and another 60 were wounded during violent protests Friday amid ongoing Egyptian efforts to broker a cease-fire. The protesters threw rocks and firebombs at Israeli troops from behind clouds of black smoke from burning tires. The soldiers responded with tear gas and live fire.

Hamas officials have been meeting with Egyptian officials in Cairo to hammer out details of a possible truce with Israel. The sides have come close to serious conflict in recent weeks, as militants have fired rockets at Israel, which has responded with airstrikes.