Palestinian Salafists protest against satirical French weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo, outside the French Cultural Centre in Gaza.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Hamas said on Tuesday that it has begun an investigation into an explosion that targeted the car of a senior security official in the Gaza Strip.
The pre-dawn explosion in the Sheikh Radwan neighborhood of Gaza City destroyed the car of Hilmi Khalaf, an official with the Hamas-controlled Interior Ministry.
No one was hurt in the blast.
Witnesses said that Hamas policemen stationed near the officer’s house opened fire at the assailants, who managed to escape unharmed.
No group claimed responsibility.
A spokesman for the Hamas ministry said that the assailants used a homemade bomb to destroy the officer’s car. He said that Hamas security forces were working to collect evidence and lay their hands on the perpetrators.
The explosion came hours after Hamas security forces arrested seven supporters of the Islamic State terrorist group during a protest in Gaza City against the Charlie Hebdo cartoons.
Some 200 Islamic State supporters demonstrated on Monday outside the French Cultural Center in the city, chanting slogans calling for the slaughtering of French nationals.
The protesters burned French flags and carried placards praising the two terrorists who killed the journalists at the satirical magazine in Paris.
Hamas policemen prevented the protesters from storming the offices of the French institution and arrested seven Islamic State supporters who were carrying the group’s black flag.