"Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Monday declared three days of mourning for 15 people killed in mass marches toward multiple Israeli borders that marked a stunning new tactic in the struggle for Palestinian statehood.
Sunday's marches, on the date Palestinians mourn their uprooting as a result of Israel's 1948 creation, illustrated Arab dissatisfaction with the deadlocked efforts to establish a Palestinian state. The unprecedented tactic also reflected an Arab world emboldened by the anti-government protests sweeping the Middle East this year.
Abbas, who is pursuing alternative routes to statehood after a breakdown in peace talks with Israel, quickly embraced those who tried to breach Israel's borders from the West Bank, Gaza, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan.
"Their blood will not be spilled in vain, because their blood was spilled for the freedom and rights of our people," he said.
Flags at public buildings in the West Bank were lowered to half-staff"