Gazans celebrate the 27th anniversary of Hamas' founding.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Razi Hamed, the de facto deputy foreign minister of the Hamas administration in Gaza, told Israel Radio on Tuesday that the Islamist movement has no desire to engage Israel in another round of fighting.
Instead, Hamed insisted, Hamas is intent on preserving quiet in the Gaza Strip.
According to Israel Radio, Hamed denied reports that his organization is engaged in either direct or indirect negotiations with Israel over a long-term ceasefire in Gaza.
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Hamed said that he did not envision a scenario in which the Hamas military wing would seek to escalate tensions on the ground in defiance of orders from the political echelon.
He told Israel Radio that the new roadway being paved adjacent to the Gaza border fence is to be utilized for purposes of defense as well as maintaining law and order internally.
The Hamas official also said that the materials used for construction are not falling into the hands of the military wing. Israel has long suspected that the organization will seek to use these raw materials to rebuild its system of underground tunnels.
Hamed said that the humanitarian situation in Gaza remains unchanged following Operation Protective Edge.
When asked whether Hamas was engaged in talks to give up the remains of dead IDF soldiers who fell in the conflict, Hamed refused to say.