Palestinian medics and protesters evacuate a wounded youth during a protest at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, east of Khan Younis, Gaza Strip. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
Palestinian medics and protesters evacuate a wounded youth during a protest at the Gaza Strip's border with Israel, east of Khan Younis, Gaza Strip. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
A relative of a Palestinian killed during a protest on the border with Israel mourns over his body in a morgue in Beit Lahiya, Gaza Strip. Picture: Dusan Vranic/AP
A relative of a Palestinian killed during a protest on the border with Israel mourns over his body in a morgue in Beit Lahiya, Gaza Strip. Picture: Dusan Vranic/AP
A Palestinian woman walks through black smoke from burning tires during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
A Palestinian woman walks through black smoke from burning tires during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Palestinian protesters burn tires during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Palestinian protesters burn tires during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Presentation of colours by US Marines and singing of the US national anthem during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
Presentation of colours by US Marines and singing of the US national anthem during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
Palestinian protesters hurl stones at Israeli troops during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Palestinian protesters hurl stones at Israeli troops during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Palestinian protesters hurl stones at Israeli troops during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Palestinian protesters hurl stones at Israeli troops during a protest on the Gaza Strip's border with Israel. Picture: Khalil Hamra/AP
Palestinian women wave national flags and chant slogans near the Israeli border fence, east of Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
Palestinian women wave national flags and chant slogans near the Israeli border fence, east of Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
A woman holds a Palestinian flag as a protester burns tires near the Israeli border fence, east of Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
A woman holds a Palestinian flag as a protester burns tires near the Israeli border fence, east of Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
Thousands of Palestinians protested near Gaza's border with Israel, as Israel prepared for the festive inauguration of a new US Embassy in contested Jerusalem. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
Thousands of Palestinians protested near Gaza's border with Israel, as Israel prepared for the festive inauguration of a new US Embassy in contested Jerusalem. Picture: Adel Hana/AP
US President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, right, and US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin attend the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
US President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, right, and US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin attend the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, left, and US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin unveil an inauguration plaque during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, left, and US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin unveil an inauguration plaque during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
Amid deadly clashes along the Israeli-Palestinian border, President Donald Trump's top aides and supporters celebrated the opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem as a campaign promised fulfilled. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
Amid deadly clashes along the Israeli-Palestinian border, President Donald Trump's top aides and supporters celebrated the opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem as a campaign promised fulfilled. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
US ambassador to Israel David Friedman, right, looks at the inauguration plaque during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
US ambassador to Israel David Friedman, right, looks at the inauguration plaque during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
Israelis hold American and Israeli flags with the new US embassy in the background in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
Israelis hold American and Israeli flags with the new US embassy in the background in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
US President Donald Trump is seen on screen as he delivers his speech during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP
US President Donald Trump is seen on screen as he delivers his speech during the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: Sebastian Scheiner/AP

Gaza Strip - Palestinians observed a general strike Tuesday to mourn dozens killed by Israeli army fire in the single deadliest day in Gaza since a 2014 war, as organizers said the day would be set aside for funerals and that turnout for any new protests on the border with Israel would likely be low.

The Islamic militant Hamas, which rules the territory, had initially said mass border protests would continue Tuesday. The day marks the 70th anniversary of what Palestinians call their "nakba," or catastrophe - the uprooting of hundreds of thousands in the Mideast war over Israel's 1948 creation.

On Monday, the world witnessed scenes of jarring contrast. Israeli forces killed 58 Palestinians, most by gunfire, and injured more than 2,700 during mass protests along the Gaza border while just a few miles away, Israel and the US held a festive inauguration ceremony for the new American Embassy in contested Jerusalem.

The high casualty toll in Gaza revived international criticism of Israel's use of lethal force against unarmed protesters, while the opening of the embassy, condemned by Palestinians as blatantly pro-Israel, further dimmed prospects of what President Donald Trump had once touted as plans to negotiate the Mideast "deal of the century."

In this photo combination, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks at the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem, left, and on the same day, Palestinians in Gaza City carry the body of Mousab Abu Leila, who was killed during a protest at the border of Israel and Gaza. Picture: AP

The U.N. Security Council planned to meet Tuesday to discuss the violence, though it was not clear what might come out of the session. Two U.N. diplomats said members couldn't reach unanimous agreement on issuing a proposed statement, circulated by Kuwait, that would have expressed "outrage and sorrow" over the killings and sought an independent investigation. The diplomats spoke on condition of anonymity because the discussions were supposed to be private.

The Gaza Health Ministry said 58 Palestinians were killed Monday, including 57 by Israeli fire and a baby who died from tear gas inhalation. In addition, more than 2 700 were hurt, among them 1 360 by gunshots, the ministry said. Of the wounded, 130 were in serious or critical condition, it said.

Israel has defended its actions, saying troops were defending its border. It also accused Hamas militants of trying to carry out attacks under the cover of the protests.

The Israeli military said Tuesday that its aircraft had struck 11 "terror targets" in a Hamas military compound a day earlier and that tanks targeted two Hamas posts. It said protesters used 10 explosive devices and firebombs against troops and that shots were fired at soldiers positioned along the border.

In this photo combination, Palestinians protest near the border of Israel and the Gaza Strip, left, and on the same day dignitaries, from left, Sara Netanyahu, her husband Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Senior White House Advisor Jared Kushner, and US President Donald Trump's daughter, Ivanka Trump, applaud at the opening ceremony of the new US embassy in Jerusalem. Picture: AP

Khaled Batsh, the head of the grass-roots organizing committee of the protests, said Tuesday would be set aside for funerals and a general strike, suggesting that there were no plans for renewed mass protests that day. A senior Hamas official said that while protests would continue, turnout would likely be low as Gaza residents were busy with funerals. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not permitted to discuss the group's deliberations with the media.

In recent days, there have been negotiations between Egypt and Hamas leaders summoned to Cairo, presumably on a possible easing of Gaza's decade-long border blockade in exchange for ending the protests.

Israel and Egypt imposed the blockade in 2007 after Hamas seized the territory from forces loyal to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Since late March, Hamas has led weekly border protests aimed at breaking the blockade.

Monday's protest also targeted the opening of the US Embassy in Jerusalem - viewed as a major provocation by the Palestinians and the Arab world.

AP