Hamas holds Israel responsible for growing tension in Gaza

Source: Xinhua| 2017-12-01 02:26:47|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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GAZA, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) -- The Islamic Hamas movement and the Islamic Jihad in the Gaza Strip said on Thursday that Israel should take full responsibility for the recent growing tension in the coastal enclave.

On Thursday evening, Israeli war jets struck several military posts belonging to Hamas and Islamic Jihad in response to earlier mortar attacks on Israel, no injuries reported, according to security officials.

Hazem Qassem, Hamas spokesman in Gaza, said in an emailed press statement that Israel's artillery shelling and intensive airstrikes on Gaza "are a continuation of the Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people."

Meanwhile, Islamic Jihad Spokesman Dawood Shihab said in another emailed press statement that Israel's attacks won't break the Palestinian armed resistance.

"The armed resistance won't keep their hands tied and it has the full right to respond against this aggression and the full right to defend itself and to defend our people," said Shihab.

Security sources and eyewitnesses said Israeli war jets fired several missiles at Hamas and Jihad military posts across the Gaza Strip, adding that huge explosions were heard in the area despite no injuries reported.

Ashraf al-Qedra, spokesman of the health ministry in Gaza, said three Palestinians were moderately injured after the Israeli strikes on Gaza.

Security sources said militants in Gaza fired 25 mortars on Israeli engineers and workers near the separation fence between Israel and northern Gaza earlier on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the Israeli army said in an official statement sent to the press that the Israeli artillery shelling on Gaza militants' posts was a response to mortar shells from there.

Tension has been mounting between Israel and the Palestinians in the past few weeks, after Israel destroyed a tunnel between southeast Gaza Strip and Israel, killing 12 militants and wounding 17 others.

Palestinian sources said a Palestinian was shot dead earlier Thursday by a Jewish settler who opened gun fire toward him in Qusra village near Nablus city, north of the West Bank.

AbdelAzim Odeh, the head of Qusra village council, told Xinhua that the victim, Mahmoud Odeh, who is in his early 40s, was working on his farmland when a Jewish settler attacked and killed him.

Odeh said the villagers withheld a group of settlers in a nearby cave area before handing them over to the Israeli side through the Palestinian civil liaison office.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' office condemned the killing, saying in an official statement that it "shows the brutalism of the settlers in the West Bank."