Haniyeh: Israeli aggression will not break Palestinians

Hamas PM calls for cessation of IDF attacks in Gaza; Palestinian sources say Hamas commander and 2 bodyguards killed in continuing Israeli strikes; retaliatory attacks come after 33 missiles fired into south.

By JPOST.COM STAFF, REUTERS
April 9, 2011 01:32
2 minute read.
The car hit by an IAF airstrike in Gaza

A car hit by IAF airstrike in Gaza 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa)

 
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Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh said Friday that "Israeli aggression in the Gaza Strip will not be able to break the will of the Palestinian people."

He also called for the cessation of IDF attacks in Gaza.

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Haniyeh's comments came after the IDF on Friday evening launched retaliatory attacks against Hamas in Gaza, which had earlier in the day launched rockets into Ashkelon.

Continued Israeli air strikes on Friday overnight killed a Hamas commander in the southern Gaza Strip and two of his bodyguards while they were in their vehicle, Palestinian medics said.


The IDF air strikes and shelling killed nine Palestinians, with Reuters reporting that three Hamas members and three Palestinian civilians were killed.

Palestinians sources also reported that another 10 people were wounded by gunfire in the neighborhood of Sajaiya.

In a day when over 22 mortars had already landed in the South, Palestinians launched another two mortar shells on Friday evening which landed in the grounds of a kibbutz in the Sha'ar Hanegev Regional Council. No one was injured, but damage was caused to one of the buildings on the kibbutz. Less than an hour later, three mortar shells landed in the Eshkol Regional Council. Two further mortar shells landed on Friday night in the Sha'ar Hanegev Regional Council. In total, 33 mortars and rockets landed in Israel on Friday, causing no casualties.



Also on Friday evening, Defense Minister Ehud Barak praised the successful interception by the Iron Dome missile defense system of three Kassam rockets fired towards Ashkelon.

Since Thursday night, 17 Palestinians were killed in various IDF attacks on terror cells throughout Gaza, according to Reuters.

The IDF said that in response to rockets fired from deep inside a residential area in southern Gaza, IAF air craft struck two terror cells.

The explosions occurred in the afternoon hours, and schools held students from returning to their homes until the attacks passed.
The explosions caused no casualties.

Earlier on Friday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said that Thursday's school bus attack "crossed the line," and adding that "the IDF acted immediately last night and would continue to act with determination."

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