Gaza on fire: Israel and Hamas plunged into exchange of blows
TEL AVIV, (BM) – Israeli tanks and aircraft today, August 28, continue to carry out intensive strikes on the positions of the Palestinian movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip, learned BulgarianMilitary.com.
The militants in the enclave respond with missile launches from Katyusha-type installations. The mediation efforts of neighboring countries aimed at ending the next armed conflict between Israel and Hamas remain unsuccessful.
Warning sirens sounded before dawn on Friday in Israeli communities near the border after six rockets were fired from Gaza. Hamas indicated that this strike was “a direct response to the escalation by the Israeli occupiers.”
In response, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) covered the Palestinian enclave with a new wave of strikes aimed at “additional Hamas military installations” in Gaza, including a “weapons production facility”.
Since 6 August, Israel has bombed Gaza almost daily in response to air-launched incendiary devices. As the conflict escalated, they were replaced by missiles.
Representatives of Egypt, traditionally assuming the role of mediators in such situations, entered into negotiations with both sides in an attempt to achieve a new ceasefire agreement. This week, the Egyptians in Gaza were joined by the envoy of Qatar, Mohammad al-Emadi, who on Tuesday, August 25, delivered a tranche of $ 30 million to the enclave in aid to the Palestinians.
As EADaily reported, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum issued a statement on August 21 that the Islamic Resistance Movement is ready for a massive “battle against the occupation of the Zionist regime” if the Israeli army continues to strike targets in the Gaza Strip. Barhoum said that Hamas is a “shield” for the Gazans and continues to resist Israeli “aggression”.
Rocket launches from Gaza towards Israel have increased since January 28 this year, when US President Donald Trump, in the presence of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, announced at the White House a peace plan for a Palestinian-Israeli settlement [“the deal of the century”]. The initiative of the American leader was resolutely rejected by the Palestinian leadership in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
Commentators associate the latest activity of Hamas with the conclusion of an agreement between Israel and the United Arab Emirates on the normalization of bilateral relations last week.
On January 28, US President Donald Trump published the text of a plan to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, calling it the “deal of the century.” According to the plan, the state of Palestine is being created within the boundaries substantially smaller than those proposed by the UN in 1947.
Under the new US plan, the capital of Palestine is located in east Jerusalem. Trump’s proposal provoked a sharp reaction in the Arab world. The head of the State Duma’s committee on international affairs announced the futility of the “deal of the century”, especially since her presentation was held without representatives of Palestine.
Trump’s proposed “deal of the century” actually repeats the main points of the 2004 UN resolution on “two states,” but with important nuances that infringe on the rights of Palestinians and in reality recognize the status quo advantageous to Israel.
The mere proposal to take the Palestinian capital beyond the borders of Old Jerusalem, far from Islamic shrines, to the Arab neighborhoods of Kafr Aqab and Shuafat, to the refugee camp now located behind the “security fence”, was perceived by the Arab world as a sophisticated mockery.
The Arabs do not even discuss the remaining points of the proposed “peace agreement”: the main and almost the only thesis sounds: “we are offered to sell our shrines and decades of struggle for freedom for $ 50 billion.” Judging by the statement of the Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and the reactions of the Arab press, the “deal of the century” did not bring peace prospects in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, but very seriously removed it.
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