Smoke and flames are seen following what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike in southern Gaza, mid July.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Israeli flags are to be set on fire and Palestinian flags raised at protests slated to take place on Friday in the border region between Israel and the Gaza Strip, Abdulatif al-Qanou, a Hamas spokesman, wrote on his Facebook page.
“The Israeli flag will be burned and the Palestinian flag will be raised high,” Qanou wrote.
Also, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman told Israel’s neighbors that they will not be able to destroy Israel and should instead learn to live alongside the Jewish state, during a speech in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day at Kibbutz Yad Mordechai, near the northern Gaza Strip.
Liberman addressed the recent mass protests in Gaza, saying that Israel will defend itself against those who threaten to destroy it.
“Unfortunately, this war over our very right to exist as a Jewish and free state continues to this day,” he said.
“We have the ability to stand and the ability and the right to defend ourselves. Therefore, my message to our neighbors from the south – you will never succeed in breaking us. The spirit, the hope and the faith that accompanied us during the Holocaust and during the War of Independence make us stronger than our enemies and all those who hate us, from all prejudices. You have no chance.
“Change direction,” Liberman asserted. “You will begin to think not about how to destroy the State of Israel, but how to exist alongside the State of Israel.”
Meanwhile, one Palestinian was killed and two were injured when Israeli fighter jets struck military targets in the Gaza Strip Wednesday night, according to Fatah sources.
After the jets struck their targets, including a Hamas compound, terrorists fired at an IDF aircraft with machine guns, according to the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit. The rounds did not hit the aircraft; rocket sirens sounded in the area surrounding Gaza.
The Palestinian killed was identified as Muhammed Hujeila, 30, Palestinian medical officials said on Thursday morning. It is unclear whether he was affiliated with Hamas.
This comes a day after an explosive device was activated on a bulldozer near the Gaza border.
“During routine activity north of the Gaza Strip, an explosive device, planted during the violent protests on the border fence, was activated against an IDF bulldozer on the western side of the border,” the IDF said in a statement. “In response, the IDF struck several Hamas terrorist targets.”
Hamas spokesman Hazim Qassim tweeted in response that “the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip constitutes a failed attempt to terrorize the masses of our people after its participation in the marches of return. These protesting masses have never feared the occupation and its threats, and will continue their struggle until they achieve liberation and return.”
The IDF has repeatedly stated that it considers Hamas responsible for everything that happens in the Gaza Strip and everything that comes out of it.
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