• The death toll in the protests on Monday, in which Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinian demonstrators, reached 60 overnight.
• The center of Gaza City was quiet, after the militant group Hamas called for a general strike.
• A spokesman for the United Nations Human Rights office criticized Israel, saying, “It seems anyone is liable to be shot dead or injured.”
In Gaza, grief and uncertainty.
Gaza awoke on Tuesday to a grim agenda: Funerals for protesters killed along the fence bordering Israel, including one for an 8-month-old baby girl overcome by tear gas; and still-frenzied work treating the thousands of people wounded, in hospitals so overrun with patients that tents were set up in their courtyards.
There was also uncertainty about whether the demonstrations would grow, fade, or give way to an outright armed conflict.
A day after scores of people were killed in the protests against Israel — the death toll reached 60 overnight — Nakba, a day that commemorates the expulsion or flight of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes upon the creation of the state of Israel, began in a more subdued way.
At the border fence, few protesters had gathered by late morning. In downtown Gaza City, the streets were quiet as Hamas, the militant Islamic group that controls the territory, had ordered a general strike.
Shops were closed, though the streets were not entirely deserted because people were streaming to mosques for midday funerals of those killed on Monday.
Across the fence in Israel, a tense, almost pastoral calm prevailed along the borderline at midday, in contrast to the bloody scenes that played out on the same hour the day before. Opposite a protest site between Beit Hanoun and Jabaliya in the northern Gaza Strip, the only trace of the previous day’s events were scorched patches of ground where flaming kites had set golden wheat fields on fire.
The emergency firefighting teams were sitting idle. No new fires had been registered. No protesters could be seen across the barrier.
Soldiers and other onlookers were left to wonder whether some kind of a deal had been struck overnight: After all, they noted, the Kerem Shalom crossing from Israel into Gaza, a main point to transport goods into the territory that had been damaged three times by protesters, was abruptly reopened just days after Israeli officials said it had been almost completely destroyed.
Israeli Palestinians planned demonstrations for Tuesday evening in Umm el-Fahm, Majd el-Krum and in the Negev, and marches were set to take place in the cities of Haifa, Nazareth, Tel Aviv and a handful of smaller places.
‘Enough is enough,’ says U.N. human rights official in criticizing Israel.
United Nations human rights officials said on Tuesday that Israel’s use of lethal force against Palestinian demonstrators was unjustified and called for an independent investigation into what could be grave breaches of international law.
“We condemn the appalling deadly violence in Gaza yesterday,” Rupert Colville, the spokesman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, told reporters. “We are extremely worried about what may happen later today,” he said. “We urge maximum restraint. Enough is enough.”
International law allowed for the use of lethal force only as a last resort in the face of an immediate threat to life or serious injury, Mr. Colville noted. Those laws “appear to have been ignored again and again,” he added.
“An attempt to approach, or crossing or damaging the green line fence do not amount to a threat to life or serious injury and are not sufficient grounds for the use of live ammunition,” he said. “It seems anyone is liable to be shot dead or injured.”
The United Nations Human Rights office called for independent and transparent investigations into all cases of death and injury since March 30, a period in which it said 112 Palestinians had been killed, including 14 children, and thousands more wounded.
Sirens in the West Bank for a bitter Palestinian anniversary.
In the West Bank, sirens sounded at noon for 70 seconds to mark the 70th anniversary of the Nakba, the Arabic word for catastrophe.
As in past years, this was a holiday for Palestinians, with schools and government offices closed, though bakeries, gas stations and pharmacies, among other shops, remained open.
In Clock Square in Ramallah, also known as Yasir Arafat Square — where a statue shows a young man clambering up a pole to raise the flag of Palestine over Jerusalem — life briefly came to a halt.
A short while later, a small group of Palestinians and Israeli security forces clashed at a checkpoint between Ramallah and the Jewish settlement of Beit El.
Violence was also reported in the early afternoon in Hebron and Bethlehem, where police officers were said to be firing rubber bullets at protesters.
A muted reaction from Western powers.
The White House staunchly defended Israel’s actions, while several nations condemned them, but much of the official reaction around the world was more muted, voicing horror at the bloodshed but not assigning blame.
“I am profoundly alarmed and concerned by the sharp escalation of violence and the number of Palestinians killed and injured in the Gaza protests,” António Guterres, the United Nations secretary general, said in a statement on Tuesday. “It is imperative that everyone shows the utmost restraint to avoid further loss of life.”
South Africa and Turkey recalled their ambassadors to Israel in protest, and Turkey also withdrew its ambassador to the United States.
Kuwait called a meeting of the United Nations Security Council on Tuesday to discuss the Gaza violence, which it blamed on Israel. The government of Saudi Arabia, whose icy relations with Israel have thawed in recent years, issued “strong condemnation and denunciation of the deadly targeting of unarmed Palestinians by the Israeli Forces of Occupation,” according to the official news agency S.P.A.
Among major Western powers, there was much criticism of the relocation of the American Embassy, but only France directly assailed Israel’s actions.
In a phone call on Monday with King Abdullah of Jordan, President Emmanuel Macron “deplored the large number of deaths of Palestinian civilians today and over the past few weeks,” the Élysée Palace said in a statement. “He condemned the violence of Israeli armed forces against demonstrators. He called on all authorities to exercise restraint and to de-escalate tensions, and insisted on the need for protests in the coming days to remain peaceful.”
Chrystia Freeland, the Canadian foreign minister, said, “It is inexcusable that civilians, journalists and children have been victims,” but avoided pointing fingers, saying that “all parties to the conflict have a responsibility” to prevent such casualties. Similarly, a spokesman for Prime Minister Theresa May of Britain urged restraint on all sides, but Mrs. May made no public statement about Gaza.
The German government made no statement on the matter.
But the Trump administration echoed the Israeli stance, that the organizers of the protests were to blame for the deaths and injuries, not Israel.
“The responsibility for these tragic deaths rests squarely with Hamas,” Raj Shah, a White House spokesman, told reporters on Monday.