United Nations Headquarters
United Nations Headquarters Thinkstock

The UN rights chief on Friday urged Israeli forces to stop using force to prevent Arab rioters from charging Israel’s security fence, and demanded that Israeli troops who do use force to defend the border “be held accountable."

"Every week, we witness instances of use of lethal force against unarmed demonstrators," the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, said in a statement Friday.

"Warnings by the United Nations and others have seemingly gone unheeded, as the approach of the security forces from week to week does not seem to have changed," he added.

Forty-two Gaza rioters have been killed since the violent demonstrations on the border began on March 30, according to the UN. Health officials in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip claim that more than 4,000 rioters have been wounded by Israeli security forces.

"The staggering number of injuries caused by live ammunition only confirms the sense that excessive force has been used against demonstrators - not once, not twice, but repeatedly," Zeid said.

Rioters have hurled stones, firebombs, and flaming tires at Israeli soldiers securing the border, and have used makeshift “terror kites” to drop explosives on Israeli positions.

Israeli forces have warned Gazans that the IDF will use force to prevent a mass breach of the Israeli border by Gaza Arabs.